Colorado teen bravely battles lifetime of medical issues, honored as Hero of the Month

Alyssa 02-2015 Shriners Philadelphia

COLORADO SPRINGS, Co. (May 15, 2015): Together with Shriners Hospitals for Children- Philadelphia, children’s charity Kids Wish Network is excited to honor Colorado Springs teen Alyssa Hampton as a 2015 Hero of the Month. Alyssa was nominated for the award for her continued bravery throughout a lifetime of medical struggles.

Kids Wish Network’s Hero of the Month program recognizes children between the ages of 3 and 18 who have faced and overcome difficult circumstances, often enduring a great deal of pain and suffering. While they may not suffer from a life-threatening illness, these Heroes have dealt with life-altering situations, demonstrating extreme bravery and courage.

Alyssa has been a HERO far longer than just the recent months. Diagnosed at birth with neuroblastoma, the cancerous tumor covered 75 perfect of Alyssa’s spine, wrapped around her right lung and compressed her windpipe. The tumor was removed in an 11-hour surgery when Alyssa was just 3 weeks old. Afterwards, she started chemotherapy to further treat the cancerous cells.

As a result of the tumor compressing her spine and the after-effects of the surgery, Alyssa is partially paralyzed from the chest down. She also battles Horner’s syndrome caused by nerve damage to her spinal cord, curvature of her spine and back (called scoliosis and kyphosis), asthma, autonomic dysreflexia, and neurogenic bladder and bowel. To help treat her spinal cord injury, Alyssa receives regular therapies at Shriners Hospitals for Children- Philadelphia, where she has been a patient since she was 6 months old.

Nominated by her team of therapists, they wrote Alyssa is “always eager and energetic when she gets to therapy and loves to entertain in any way she can. Alyssa is definitely a Hero around the hospital, saying hi to everyone who walks by and starting friendly conversation. She never ceases to show her strength and prove how much she is improving in therapy. Even though she has been forced out of her comfort zone, Alyssa has taken advantage of the new experiences and has given every activity her best effort. Alyssa is our Hero.”

“Thank you for the Hero of the Month award,” said Alyssa’s mom Tina Hampton. “I can’t tell you how much the award meant to her. We truly appreciate it and Alyssa was so happy and honored to receive it. It made her feel special and appreciated.”

Shriners Hospitals for Children- Philadelphia is one of hundreds of facilities across the United States that works with Kids Wish Network to honor brave kids. Each facility is able to nominate up to five Heroes per month, and each Hero is recognized with a Kids Wish Network certificate, t-shirt, and gift card. Kids Wish Network honored almost 900 Heroes nationwide in 2013/14.

Kids Wish Network is a nationwide charitable organization dedicated to infusing hope, creating happy memories, and improving the quality of life for children having experience life-altering situations. More than just granting wishes, Kids Wish Network makes a difference through its various programs by delivering hope to kids across the United States. Learn more at www.kidswishnetwork.org.

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Kids Wish Network is a charitable organization dedicated to infusing hope, creating happy memories, and improving the quality of life for children having experienced life-altering situations. Kids Wish Network assists children and their families through several key programs.