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Toddler brought to NY for heart surgery

September 17, 2009 5:57:50 AM PDT
A 14-month-old girl from Ecuador, has arrived to the New York area to receive a life saving heart operation. Melanie Macias was diagnosed with a hole in her heart, which was deemed inoperable in Ecuador.

The operation will be conducted at a local Long Island Hospital at no cost to the family of the young girl. The surgery is arranged by the Gift of Life, Inc.

John DePrima with the National First Responders organization, was able to convince the hospital to perform this life saving operation and DePrima enlisted the help of the National Police Defense Foundation (NPDF) who has participated in eight emergency life saving operations to help make the travel accomodations and security arrangements to insure a timely and safe arrival of baby Melanie.

Baby Melanie and her mother arrived at Newark International Airport Wednesday night and was taken to the hospital where the procedure will take place.

"It is dedicated and caring people such as John DePrima and Joe Occhipinti that can make these seemingly impossible operations and wishes become a reality" said Paul Llobell, NFRO's Executive Director," and we are pleased to have them associated with us".

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