Last month, ten Install Engineers from international engineering company KONE challenged themselves to take on the brutal Total Warrior.

They braved the grueling 6km course to raise funds for CHSF after a colleague’s daughter needed life-saving treatment at the heart unit in Leeds.

The ten engineers volunteered to take up the Total Warrior challenge to support their colleague and friend James Simpson, Vicky his wife and their daughter – heart warrior Hollie.

Hollie was born with a complex heart defect and the family are currently receiving invaluable support in Hollie’s fight for recovery from Children’s Heart Surgery Fund.

 

Hollie’s story journey so far…

At 22 weeks into their pregnancy, James and Vicky found out that their little girl had a serious heart condition. They were given an option to terminate the pregnancy or have palliative care surgery that would rebuild the blood flow to her heart.

Hollie’s mum and dad decided to continue with the pregnancy and Hollie was born on 5th January 2022, weighing 6lb 3oz.

 

Due to the seriousness of Hollie’s condition, James and Vicky never got to hold their newborn baby, as Hollie was taken for surgery almost straight away after she was born. Less than 24 hours in the world and Hollie was already in surgery for a 10 hour operation on her heart.

James and Vicky were told the surgery was a complex one as they were ‘re-plumbing’ a tiny heart that supplies all Hollie’s organs and brain – this surgery would be creating a new circulation. Mum and dad were told that the operation had an 80% chance of working but a 50% chance of recovery, due to how complex a surgery it was.

More than six months after she was born, Hollie is still in hospital receiving treatment and has since had a second heart surgery called the ‘Glenn Procedure’.

Mum Vicky gave us an update on Hollie:

“Hollie stayed on the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) until she was nearly five months old. She struggled getting off the ventilator and caught numerous infections, including pneumonia and sepsis.”

 

“We eventually were able to take her off the ventilator at Easter. Hollie was then taken to Ward L51 – the children’s heart ward. She stayed on the ward until the 15th June 2022, where Hollie went for her second open heart surgery – the Glenn.”

“The Glenn operation went well, but Hollie had some complications. After five days we returned to Ward L51. Hollie still needed oxygen, but we eventually weaned her off last week (first week in July).”

 

“We are currently still on the children’s heart ward, three weeks post Glenn, battling with stomach and feeding issues. Once this is resolved we are hopeful that we will be able to go home.”

 

“I am overwhelmed with what the team from KONE have done. By taking on Total Warrior they have supported our daughter and such a great cause – Children’s Heart Surgery Fund.”

On Sunday 26th June the ten workmates met the mud in the brutal 6km assault course.

The Total Warrior route is designed to not only test participants physically, but trial their mental stamina and determination too.

The KONE team said:

“Hollie will always be classed has high risk due to her heart condition and will require a further surgery called the Fontan at four years old, and many more small procedures over the years.”

 

“The charity have already played a huge part in supporting the family through this time and have been invaluable.”

 

“Our way of showing our support in their fight is to raise money for this great charity to ensure they are there for future years and families.”

The KONE team smashed the Total Warrior course last month and raised a phenomenal £5,285.44 for CHSF in the process.

A huge thank you to Joanna, Cameron, Chris, Ewan, Kadan, Luke, Mic, Phil and Jacob for taking on Total Warrior and thank you as well to everyone who made a donation and contributed to this fantastic total!

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