Hospital Heroes Compete in a Marathon of their Own: Brayden McDonald

September 24, 2020

Our 2019 hero was Brayden McDonald, the child of Melanie McDonald, advanced customer accounting associate, Customer Service and Billing Controls. Diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis (CF) at just four weeks old, Brayden spent a significant amount of time in hospitals to receive treatment for the disease with no cure. “Brayden goes to Akron Children’s Hospital several times a year for appointments with the CF Care Team and annually for an extensive visit with tests and exams,” Melanie said. CF often causes buildup of thick, sticky mucus that can damage many of the body’s organs, particularly the lungs and digestive system.

When Brayden was selected to be the hospital hero in 2019, Melanie was so dedicated to raising money and awareness for Akron Children’s Hospital, that she ran in all three of the Akron Marathon Race Series events: The National Interstate Insurance 8K; the Goodyear Half Marathon; and the FirstEnergy Akron Marathon.

Brayden is now 11 years old and has been keeping busy by playing video games, socializing with friends via Xbox Live, taking walks around the neighborhood, hiking in the local metro parks, going to drive-in movies, and playing with the family dog, Clash. “Brayden’s health has been good overall by keeping up with daily treatments and medications, and we recently experienced our first ‘virtual’ Akron Children’s Hospital CF Clinic visit in July as well as a ‘drive-thru’ swabbing appointment for a routine throat culture,” Melanie said. With Brayden’s interest and aptitude for video games, remote learning and virtual appointments will be a breeze for this hero!

See Brayden’s 2019 hero profile.

For additional information on this year’s virtual FirstEnergy Akron Marathon.

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