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Brave boy rises above challenges

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He’s nicknamed Logan the Lionheart, and for good reason.


Logan Andrews, 4, has battled a serious health condition since his birth and has already undergone a pair of heart surgeries to address the problem.


The Harbourview South youngster was diagnosed prior to his birth with a rare congenital heart disease known truncus arteriosis. As a result, he was born with a single blood vessel leading from his heart instead of two, which has caused severe circulatory problems.


One week after his birth, Logan had his first surgery in Edmonton to place a conduit in his heart, resulting in a six-week hospital stay. He had to have another procedure to replace the initial conduit 14 months ago. Logan has also had two cardiac catheterizations performed on him in an attempt to avoid surgery.


Logan will need to have the conduit replaced regularly throughout his lifetime, but other than that, he is a happy, healthy youngster who enjoys playing hockey, baseball, soccer and wrestling with his father, Darrow.


Now, the Children’s Wish Foundation is hoping to give Logan and his family some relief. The charity will send the family to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. so Logan can meet cartoon heroes Buzz Lightyear and Woody of Toy Story.


Logan’s mother, Meighan, expects the family will take the trip sometime in 2013, after Logan turns five and will be able to enjoy the experience more.


"It’s kind of like winning the lottery," Andrews said. "It’s all Logan and what he’s gone through. It’s been tremendous. When you sit down and you think about it, it’s been hard on the family, the stress and the sadness and the heartache.


"For us to go as a family and just relax, to not have any cares in the world, it’s going to be amazing."


Andrews said her son has a "huge spirit," is extremely co-operative with doctors and serves as a test patient for medical students through the Variety Children’s Heart Centre.


"He’s been the biggest trooper," she said. "He’s just so good at letting doctors listen to him and feel him."


Andrews said Logan’s older siblings, brother Jesse and stepbrother Donavon, have also had to stay strong through the turbulent times. The family did receive a pleasant surprise last year when Logan was released just five days after his conduit-replacement procedure.


"We thought we were going to be in Edmonton for at least 10 days to two weeks," Andrews said. "Three-year-olds, their hearts are a little bigger and they recuperate a whole lot faster. It was amazing."  

 
Logan is serving as one of 10 Children’s Wish Foundation’s child ambassadors for the coming year. He was slated to be honoured at the Royal Canadian Air Force Band’s performance at the Franco-Manitoban Cultural Centre on Dec. 6.

dan.falloon@canstarnews.com

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