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Julianna Grace was born on December 9th, 2014, at Fairview Hospital. For her first 10 days of life, Julianna fought for her life in the NICU. This warrior princess’ story is just beginning. Once the pediatrician observed Julianna at a couple hours old, we were told she had a bilateral cleft palate and would need surgery to repair it. We were referred to a plastic surgeon who noticed her eyes were shaking pretty badly. This is known as nystagmus. Our 2 month old infant was observed by 10 doctors and specialists that day and it took hours to see them all. Julianna was 3 months old when she finally had a brain & eye MRI. After a 1 week waiting period, Julianna was diagnosed with such a RARE disorder known as septo optic dysplasia/optic nerve hypoplasia. This meant our little peanut, Julianna, was born with an absent septum pellucidum, has cortical brain malformation on both sides of her brain, and her optic nerves are underdeveloped. This condition causes Julianna to be blind in both eyes, bilateral cleft palate, growth hormone deficiency, secondary adrenal insufficiency, obstructive sleep apnea & very low muscle tone.

Fast forward, and Julianna is a sassy 9 year old girl who can read and type in braille. She loves music and is a self-taught pianist! She plays by ear and has since she was 3 when she started walking. Julianna wants to be a music teacher when she grows up. Music is her safe place, and she gets lost in playing piano or listening to classical, pop or country music. She loves to sing and she does it very well. Music has helped her heal through all the pain she has had to endure over the years from surgeries. This sweet, silly, and loving girl is our miracle and we are blessed beyond words to have her here with us today!

TEAM Julianna


David McElhatten
Jamie Henderson
Robyn Hensch
Paxton Orndoff
Stacie Grabowski
Daisy Norman
Michele Prugel
Meghann Stell
Lisa Kovacic
Crystal Gibson
Melissa Nooney
Mladen Dugonjic
Stacey Keller
Ella Henderson
Cara Detwiler
Lindsey Ward
Sherman Jarrett
Alicia Evans
Miranda Waite
Bettie Schmikla
George Linder
Melissa Bogo
Ann Marie Raddell
Aedan Gibson
Clark Gibson
Casey Zicarelli
Amber Jacobson
Anna Russell
Darci Christner
Lauren Carlson
Allison Robinson
Olivia Ryncarz
Laurianne Ponsart