ONTARIO, CA- On January 27, 2001, Malake D. McGee was born at Miller’s Children’s Hospital in Long Beach, California. At birth, he was diagnosed with Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Meconium Aspiration Syndrome and Persistent Pulmonary Hypertension. During the first few hours of birth he was placed on a ventilator that was to help break down the meconium in his lungs. The ventilator wasn’t working so the doctor on duty suggested he be transferred to a Children’s Hospital in Los Angeles for a more intense procedure.
Malake was transported to CHLA by helicopter. Upon arrival, he was placed on another type of ventilator for 48 hours. The ventilator was not working so he went through a major procedure called Veno-Venous Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation. This procedure requires a cannula to be placed in a large vessel in the neck where the blood drains from and returns to the veins. During this time he was heavily sedated. When dad Michael McGee had to sign off for the surgery, the surgeon asked if he had gotten any sleep and he stated “NO” not for three days.
The surgeon told him about the Los Angeles Ronald McDonald House (LARMH). When his dad went and spoke with LARMH they had no rooms available. Later on that night when the surgeon saw Michael he asked him if he had gotten a room and he stated “no”. The next day a social worker contacted Michael to introduce herself. Later that day she called him with good news informing him that they had a room available for him and his family at the LARMH.
For two weeks LARMH helped EASE the family’s state of mind while going through this journey by talking to other families with different journeys. LARMH gives you HOPE knowing that the staff, volunteers and other companies are caring, inviting and treats you as if you are a part of their very own.
By volunteering at the Los Angeles Ronald McDonald House throughout the year and raising funds for the Walk For Kids, the family feels they are able to give back to an organization that was able to help them during a time when we really needed it.
You can also give back to the Ronald McDonald House by participating in the Walk For Kids event this Sunday, April 2 at Citizen Banks Arena in Ontario. For more information, please visit www.walkforkids.org.