When Cora was 8 weeks old she was diagnosed with a liver disease called Biliary Atresia. A surgical procedure was performed on Cora as an infant with that ultimately was unsuccessful in stemming the progression of the disease. The only other alternative treatment should the disease progress is a liver transplant.
Parents Jen & David Lee, a longtime educator and Coach for Rockford Public School, have the likelihood of the disease further damaging their daughters’ liver and related health issues for 10 years.
The first two years were rough, in and out of hospitals quite often. As many as 80% of kids with this disease have their transplant by age 2. Cora had defied the odds and gone 10 years before needing the transplant.
This past Fall, a routine yearly ultrasound found a mass on Cora’s liver. It followed up with a biopsy and labs but was inconclusive and U of M decided to repeat the MRI in April. The April MRI showed progression of the size of the mass and it was confirmed that Cora has liver cancer. She was promptly listed for transplant and received an exception letter that brings her PELD score (the scoring system for getting an organ donation) to a very high number so that she is high on the organ transplant list. The transplant was performed June 13th at the University of Michigan hospital and Cora is in the early stages of recovery with her family that includes big brother Logan Lee and big sister Cassidy Lee.
A fundraiser for Cora and her family will be held on Sunday, June 24th from 3:00pm-7:00pm at Rockford High School. A spaghetti dinner (a family favorite) will be served, silent and live auctions, and special T-Shirts will be available with proceeds going to the Lee family. Time missed from work, travel and expenses related to the extended stay in Ann Arbor, and associated medical bills are the target of the effort. Community members have donated fantastic auction items and RHS Head Football Coach Ralph Munger is rumored to be rallying his NFL alumni for auctions items.
Please join your community in celebrating Cora’s return to good health and providing a terrific family a hand up in their time of need.