Just last month, 14-year-old Kayla Baker was in a dire situation. Suffering from pulmonary fibrosis – a chronic disease that causes stiffening in the lungs – she was in desperate need of a double-lung transplant, with only 19 per cent of her lungs functioning. She had just been put on life-support at the start of the month, and the situation wasn’t looking good.
But on April 3, hope was found for the Baker family as Kayla received and underwent surgery for a new left lung, which will now grant her the chance to live a longer, full life.
Baker’s mom, Susan Tremblett posted in the Facebook group, New Lungs for Kayla, the day the donor was found: “Thank you to the family that made the choice to have their loved one be the hero. At 1:30 a.m. this morning Kayla was taken to the OR for her new left lung… Yes she received 1 lung she will be able to function as a normal 14-year-old… We will be forever grateful for the support from our friends, family and community but most of all the donor family… May your memory forever live through my daughter and may this story inspire many more changes to make others organ donors as well.”
Baker is currently on a ventilator to help her breathe, but is slowly being taken off it for longer periods of time each day, her mom told the Facebook group, which has more than 10,000 members. Soon, Baker should be able to breathe on her own. As of Saturday, April 27, Baker had done three hours off of the vent.
Baker’s family has organized a five-kilometre run/walk fundraiser for May 11 that will take place on the Bob McMullen Trail in Preston. Registration is $35 each and money raised will benefit The Hospital for Sick Children’s SickKids Foundation.
You can register for the walk or make a donation at Baker’s website, runalung.ca.