Logan was born January 31, 2000 and had an uneventful first year of life. It wasn’t until he turned 1 year and 1 week old that he became very sick and was referred to a cardiologist for an enlarged heart. His family was told that his heart was only functioning at a13% ejection fraction. He immediately started intensive treatment plans including catheterization, oral medications, and nonstop testing.
As the medications started, he began to deteriorate at a rapid pace. By May 2001, Logan was being referred to Texas Children’s Hospital for a heart transplant evaluation. At this point, his heart was barely functioning at a 4% ejection fraction and he was rushed into the hospital ICU. Logan was added to the national registry list on May 23, 2001, and so his wait began. Even in the midst of the best treatment possible Logan’s health declined daily. He was intubated to decrease the work that he was having to do and running 107 degree fever, when a team of doctors met to discuss different options to keep him alive. There was only one option. On June 13, 2001 Logan was taken into surgery and placed on an adult heart bypass machine (LVAD) because there was a 90% chance he would not survive 24 more hours. Over the next six days Logan would suffer dangerous blood pressure spikes, kidney failure, and dialysis and a stroke.
On June 20, 2001 Logan received the gift of life, a heart transplant! Unfortunately, the trials didn’t stop there. Logan continued to battle many trails as a 17-month-old baby. He suffered a stroke causing vision loss, brain damage, and for about a year, the inability to move his feet leaving him to relearn how to eat, hold his head up, and speak.
Logan is now an 18-year-old boy who celebrated his 16th heart anniversary in June! He is a junior in high school and loves to hunt, fish and play video games. Having a lifetime illness has it’s struggles every day, but the days he spends with his Hunt with Heart family he isn’t handicapped, he isn’t sick, he isn’t alone. Those are the free moments in his life where his illness doesn’t define him and he experiences his greatest joys in life. They are his best memories.
“There are things every child dreams of doing and despite his disabilities, Logan is no different. He sometimes fails to accept the inability to do things and other times the realization is a crushing blow. As his parents we have had to watch him struggle his entire life. As parents of a child with disabilities, we sometimes struggle with accommodating his dream, so we are forever grateful to Hunt with Heart and Beaver Creek Ranch owners and staff for making Logan’s dream come true. The day he left for his hunt, I had never seen him so excited that he was going with his dad, hunting, just like every little boy dreams! They bragged about the food, the unlimited supply of cookies, the staff, and accommodations. Though he may have required unconventional methods to shoot a deer, Logan’s guide put him in the stand and the boy drew one final breath, held it as he fired his shot, and drew his first breath as a man. In that moment he knew no pain, no illness, no disability, no limits. For a moment he was free!” -Sheri, Mother