Thirty-nine days is all we had
On August 12, 2011, Hayden Michael Nowkhah was born, seemingly healthy. At six days old, after just three days at home, Hayden was back in the hospital with a 102 degree fever. A virus attacked his fragile heart. Within a matter of days, Hayden was near the top of the heart transplant list. How could this have happened to a little boy who seemed to be the picture of perfect health?
This virus caused a condition called myocarditis and devastated his heart function. Hayden would need a heart transplant. After numerous surgeries and complications, Hayden suffered a catastrophic stroke. That stroke would cause him to be removed from the transplant list. At 39 days old, we lost our precious, brave baby boy.
Because of Hayden’s experience, and because thousands of infants go through the same thing every year, we decided to create "Hayden's Hope" to raise awareness for pediatric organ donation. In addition, Hayden's Hope, working in conjunction with the Children's Organ Transplant Association (COTA), is raising money to cover transplant-related expenses in honor of children awaiting life-saving transplants.
Medical bills, travel costs to and from transplant centers, lengthy stays away from home and in many cases, job loss affects transplant families and devastates them financially. COTA families receive 100% of the money raised through Hayden's Hope, easing this financial burden and allowing them to focus on what is most important: the life of their child.
Though Hayden is no longer with us, his story lives on. The story of the little boy who died but whose heart beats out of hope and love for children everywhere. It is our hope that Hayden's story inspires others to help children achieve the successful transplants they deserve so that they can live the life they were meant to live.