Utah-based organization Tender Heartbeats donated the AED. The group was just formed by Carolyn Quigley and is gaining ground
“I don’t want another parent to go through the grief of losing their child due to not having a life saving device,” Quigley said.
Quigley lost a daughter who was born with a congenital heart defect in 2000. The disease affects nearly one in 100 babies.
She wanted to kick off Congenital Heart Disease awareness by donating defibrillators to Utah schools on Valentine’s Day.
Bonneville Elementary School Principal Donna Reid accepted the AED on behalf of the students. Reid said her staff gets yearly training on how to use the device.
Jacob Feinauer, a third grader, is one of several students at Bonneville with CHD. His family is grateful the school now had the device.
“It’s really the only thing that could be used to help save his life,” Diane Feinauer, Jacob’s mother, said.
Jacob was born with half a heart. He’s had three surgeries since he’s been born and his mom says he’ll likely have more. She wants to spread awareness about the disease.
“C.H.D. has killed more kids than all childhood cancers combined and yet the funding is five times lower,” she said.
But Jacob is a fighter. He is glad the AED is in his school now. Most defibrillators are in high schools because of sports programs, but not elementary schools.
“It’s a huge relief because the type of congenital heart disease Jacob has is rare and serious,” Feinauer said.
“I think it’s going to better for all the kids that have problems like me,” he added.
Tender Heartbeats is working on an online database that would