Kelowna’s Kolt Gross is not your typical almost two-year-old. Born with a heart defect that required him to undergo open-heart surgery within his first year and suffering seizures from birth, Kolt’s a fighter who has BC Children’s Hospital in his corner
The staff at B.C. Children’s Hospital have saved Kolt multiple times in his short life, for which Kolt’s parents, Kendall-Leigh and Bryan, are grateful.
“They’re miracle people,” Kendall-Leigh said. “He wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for Children’s.”
Kolt was born two months premature weighing 1.59 kilograms with tetralogy of fallot, a complex heart defect that limits his heart’s ability to pump oxygenated blood to other organs.
At one month, Kolt suffered a cardiac arrest and stroke as doctors at B.C. Children’s Hospital performed emergency surgery. He was on life support for four days.
The family was able to go home for a couple of months with plans for Kolt to undergo open-heart surgery in January 2020, but that got pushed up when the team at one of the hospital’s outreach clinics noticed Kolt’s oxygen levels were dropping.
Kolt came through the complicated surgery and was able to come home, but in December 2019, the eight-month-old contracted Bocavirus, a strain of coronavirus.
Kolt suffered a heart attack and stroke while the medivac plane was en route to take him to BC Children’s Hospital.
Kolt’s parents were told there was a 95% chance he would not survive the flight.
“The second I arrived at Children’s with Kolt that night, it was Christmas Eve 2019, it was just like a weight had lifted off my shoulders because I knew that if anything were to happen, he was in the best hands possible,” said an emotional Kendall-Leigh.
After suffering a stroke at eight months old, Kolt had to relearn everything as well as deal with typical stroke side effects.
Now home, Kolt is tube-fed, on oxygen and has cerebral palsy,
Despite his challenges, Kolt’s happy at home and loves singing and music.
“It doesn't take much to make him giggle and laugh,” said Kendall-Leigh. “He loves being goofy.”
People can help children like Kolt receive care by buying tickets in the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation’s 2021 Choices Lottery.
The lottery offers more than 3,200 prizes worth over a total of $3.9 million to be won, including luxury homes, vacations and cars.
The grand prize lottery winner can choose one of seven luxury home packages in locations that include Vernon, Okanagan Falls and Victoria or take $2.2 million in tax-free cash instead.
Check out the prize home video tours online at bcchildren.com.
Get your ticket before midnight March 25 to be entered to be one of 51 winners of the Early Bird prize valued at over $350,000.
Tickets are available until April 8 or until they sell out.
Buy tickets online at bcchildren.com, by phone at 1-888-887-8771 or in person at London Drugs and Save-On-Foods.