LLU Children’s Hospital Foundation Gala
Kai Mahina, greets guests as they enter the banquet hall. She was the inspiration for the “Wish Upon A Star” theme and painting of the little girl sitting on the silver moon.
On Sunday, February 26, the Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital celebrated 13 years of providing Inland Empire children with world-renowned hospital care with their 13th Annual “Wish Upon a Star” gala. This signature event, presented by the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians, took place at the Ontario Convention Center in Ontario. The evening included a live and silent auction, dinner, and entertainment by the world-renowned Glenn Miller Orchestra. All proceeds from the gala benefited the pediatric neurosciences team.
“As a responsible government we are proud to stand with more than 50 Inland Empire businesses and non-profits to support the pioneering work done at Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital,” said chairman Deron Marquez of the San Manuel Band of Mission Indians at the gala. “We share with the hospital a belief that our actions today will have a direct effect on the health and well being of future generations.”
Despite advances in medical care, traumatic brain injury remains the leading cause of death and permanent disability for children in this country. Some of the other disorders include, but are not limited to, spina bifida which is one of the most common birth defects, cerebral palsy, and pediatric brain tu
Lorelei Sinco, 10, sings the national anthem at the beginning of the 13th annual LLUCH Gala.
mors which are increasing faster than any other type of pediatric cancer.
Because of the complex nature of these disorders and injuries, the pediatric neurosciences team enlists the talents and expertise of a vast array of pediatric specialties including anesthesiology, neurology, neurosurgery, orthopedic and general surgery, oncology, pathology, pediatrics, physical medicine and rehabilitation, plastics, radiology, and others.
Using a multi-disciplinary approach, the pediatric neurosciences team develops comprehensive treatment plans that are individualized for each child’s needs while providing cutting edge treatment for pediatric neurological disorders and traumatic injuries.
Each of these individual treatment plans can cost $1,000 alone. Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital remains committed to the children and families of the Inland Empire. Believing that every child deserves the best care available, treatment is provided to children without regard for their family’s ability to pay. Generous support, in the amount of $471,000 raised through ticket sales and auction items, at the gala allows Children’s Hospital to continue to provide that care to all families.
Also included in the evening’s activities were the special recognition of Mr. and Mrs. Martin and Evelyn Matich who are the 2005 recipients of the prestigious Shirley N. Pettis Award. This award is given to individuals who have shown distinguished service as an advocate for children and who demonstrate an intense desire and motivation to continue the work of improving the lives of children throughout the Inland Empire. The award is named for The Honorable Shirley N. Pettis, whose six years of service and the founding chair of the LLUCH Foundation Board underscored her commitment to improving the status of young people.
Community members Jim and Jeannie Durbin and Sandra Robertson were honored as the recipients of the Hometown Heroes award to recognize the contributions of individuals who share our passion for children and who help enrich the quality of life in our communities.
By Preston Clarke Smith
Students from Redlands Adventist Academy lead the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance at the start of the LLUCH Foundation Gala.
Emmy award-winning journalist Mary Parks, KNBC 4’s Inland Empire bureau chief, presides over the program as master of ceremonies.
Three Hometown Heroes were honored at the LLUCH Foundation Gala. (From left) Sandra Robertson and Jeannie and Jim Durbin receive the Hometown Heroes Award from Zareh Sarrafian, MBA, senior vice president, LLUMC, and administrator, LLUCH.
(From left) Stephen Ashwal, MD, chief of pediatric neurology; Ruthita Fike, MA, chief executive officer, LLUMC; Dixie Watkins, 2006 Foundation Board Gala committee chair; Renee Osterdock, MD, pediatric neurosurgeon; and Andrea Ray, MD, pediatric plastic surgeon, accept a check for $471,000 from Larry Sharp, chair of the Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital Foundation board.
Mr. and Mrs. Martin and Evelyn Matich were the 2005 recipients of the prestigious Shirley N. Pettis Award. Accepting on behalf of their parents and grandparents are (from left) the Matich’s grandson, Steve Matich, and Bob Matich (at podium). Presenting the award is Mr. Sarrafian (second from right).
Sean Bush, MD, emergency room physician at LLUMC and star of the Animal Planet series “Venom ER,” helps auction off a day with Dr. Venom, during the live auction.
Dr. Osterdock and Dr. Ray introduce Blanca Cabrera and Bernardo Molina, parents of Crystal and Cristina, craniopagus twins joined at the head at birth. The twins were separated by a large, multidisciplinary team lead by Drs. Osterdock and Ray at LLUCH.