Little girl inspires big turn out for hospital fundraiser

April 28, 2013 12:55:08 PM PDT
Hundreds took on a cross fit challenge for a good cause. Organizers say more than 400 people gathered for the Fourth Annual Battle Buddy 57 for the important mission.

It's a beautiful morning at the park for Leslie Stevens and her daughter, Olivia, but it was made even better by this cross fit fundraiser called Battle Buddy 57. It was inspired by Olivia's stay at Texas Children's Hospital after she born with a rare chromosomal deletion disorder.

"She was born very small, with a variety of health issues. She spent her first 57 days in the NICU, cared for by a variety of nurses," said Olivia's dad, Chad Stevens.

"We knew that it was a renowned children's hospital and we were just very fortunate to already live in the Houston area where we had that kind of right around the corner from us," said her mother, Leslie Stevens.

That gratitude has translated into 400 people taking on 57 reps of various grueling cross fit exercises, raising thousands of dollars for Texas Children's Newborn Center.

"This is a passion we all share. We love working out and if we can do it for a good cause, it makes it even more fun," participant Natasha Hakala said.

For Olivia, who's now three years old, the 57 days she spent at Texas Children's Hospital are far behind.

"She is a happy little girl now. She laughs, she has a great sense of humor, she plays with her toys, she goes to school," Leslie Stevens said.

While Olivia's mother says she still faces serious challenges, their family is thankful, and hopes to help provide the same care for every child.

"We want to give every baby that chance. We want to give every baby the chance to get that quality care they need to have a life, to get that chance at life," Chad Stevens said.

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