Giving News & Highlights

Grateful cancer patient to run in Pine Tree Runs this weekend

Lindsay and Jeremy Ginter had no idea that a routine checkup would reveal their worst fear: their seven-month-old son, Evan, had cancer.

In December 2008, the Ginters’ primary pediatrician noticed that Evan’s breathing was very shallow, and a chest x-ray revealed a large, dark mass on his right lung. Evan was admitted to Children’s – Minneapolis immediately.

While there, Evan underwent a series of tests and scans, along with a major surgery, all which revealed a rare form of lung cancer known as pleuropulmonary blastoma (PPB) Type 1R.

Through it all, the Ginters are grateful for the care that Evan received during their ten days at Children’s. “The care provided by the oncologists, pulmonologists and nurses was of the highest caliber,” they recall. Lindsay and Jeremy highlight the blessing of having such easy access to Dr. Yoav Messinger and Children’s vast experience with the PPB registry. They also recall how Evan’s care team was always available for questions, advice and even general conversation. “The Children’s team has supported us throughout the entire journey.”

evan ginterEvan Ginter, 5 years old.

Evan is now 5 years old, and will start Kindergarten in the fall. But before summer is over, he will play an integral role as one of five patient representatives from Children’s at the 28th Annual Pine Tree Apple Tennis (PTATC), taking place this weekend.

We invite you to join the Ginters and other families at PTATC to raise awareness and funds for cancer research at Children’s. Come out and enjoy a tennis match or sign up to participate in the Pine Tree Runs, a 5K, 10K and Kid’s Fun Run taking place on Sunday, Aug. 4. To learn more about the tennis tournament and walk/run, visit

2 families join together to help others in their time of need

On Sept. 1, 2011, Ray Gregory Labat joined the proud parents, Adam and Erin Labat. Their first born, he had a smile that would light up a room. Just as he was starting to develop a personality, Ray passed away from sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). He was 4 months, 10 days old.

On Nov. 4, 2009, another beautiful first-born son, Noah Joseph Rogers, came into this world. He was the love of Scott and Jenna's lives. At 11 months, he died from SIDS while taking a nap at daycare.

Ray Gregory Labat

Noah Joseph Rogers

During their time of grief, the last thing these families wanted to think about was money. Between funeral costs, head stones, flowers, and more, the bills added up quickly. It wasn’t something they planned for. No one does.

With the help of the Minnesota Sudden Infant Death Center and Children’s Hospital and Clinics of Minnesota, the Labat and Rogers families have created the Ray Labat/Noah Rogers Memorial Funeral Fund. This fund was created to help families who have been affected by SIDS to cover some of the funeral expenses.

These families know firsthand how difficult it can be losing a child. Not only are they honoring their children, but they’re helping other families in their time of need by allowing them to focus on what’s truly important, not on how much it’s all going to cost.

Both families have started their own fundraising events benefiting the memorial fund:

Hit the greens during Noah’s Memorial Classic on July 29 at the Medina Golf and Country Club.

Lace up your shoes for Ray’s Run on Sept. 14 around Rice Lake in Maple Grove.

In 2012, the Ray Labat/Noah Rogers Memorial Funeral Fund helped 11 families from across Minnesota – in memory of Ray and Noah.

Team Sophie

Micah and Jeff Commander were excited to add another to their growing brood, and even more excited to learn they were having twins. But midway through the pregnancy, they learned that one of the girls, Sophie, would be born with a rare congenital heart defect that, if left untreated, could lead to congestive heart failure, heart murmurs and abnormal heart rhythms.


Inspired by Ziggy’s care, his family plans to give back

Emily, along with her husband, Matt, rushed to Methodist Hospital when her water broke at 30 weeks and was told by her doctor that she was about to deliver a pre-term baby who would need to be taken by ambulance to Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota in Minneapolis immediately after he was born. Wanting to be with their baby, the couple changed plans and rushed to Abbott Northwestern Hospital, across from Children’s, to deliver their son, Zigmond “Ziggy” Barbero.

barberobabyDuring labor, Emily received two steroid shots to help with fetal lung development and was visited by Children’s neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) nurses who told she and her husband what to expect after delivery.

“Great preparation,” the couple said.

The doctors and nurses armed them with the facts.

Ziggy was born weighing 3 pounds, 6 ounces. Matt, a property development executive with Target corporation, was thrilled and scared at the sight of his tiny infant son. Ziggy was immediately moved into Children’s special care nursery (SCN) on the seventh floor of Abbott where he was closely monitored.

Four days after Ziggy was born, the Barbero family learned that they were going to be one of 15 families moved over to the new Mother Baby Center when it opened. They were the first occupants of the generously sponsored C.H. Robinson SCN room. This was especially meaningful, as Emily is the director of internal communications at C.H. Robinson and has been involved in their partnership with Children’s.

barberofamilyjpgMoving their fragile child made them a bit nervous until they saw their beautiful new home, complete with a pull-out sofa for the parents to stay. They were able to remain with their precious Ziggy as he learned to feed, gain weight and grow stronger.

During their time at Children's, Emily and Matt were moved by the people and care that blessed their son’s life. Both parents look forward to exploring the corporate partnerships that their companies have with the hospital and want to continue being involved!

The 'Hoiness Miracles' return to Baby Steps

In July 2011, Kellie Hoiness was giddy over her upcoming 21-week doctor’s appointment. She and her husband, Marshall, would learn the gender of their twins. As first-time parents, each appointment was a milestone.

They learned they were having baby girls – and that their seemingly normal pregnancy was anything but. One of the twins – Khloe – had blood flow issues. She wasn’t growing properly.