DERRY — She’s a marathon mom for all the right reasons.
Heather Demers is a busy mother to three children, including 6-year-old Brady, who inspires her to take on challenges to help make a difference.
On April 21, Demers will run her first Boston Marathon as part of the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary team to support children at the hospital needing critical care.
The spring run in Boston is near and dear to her own heart.
When Brady was born prematurely at only week 24 weeks, he weighed 1 pound 4 ounces and was only 12 inches long.
“He couldn’t even have a Band-Aid, he was so small,” Demers said.
Her son had many problems due to his premature birth and had difficulty breathing on his own. He was on life support to help him breathe for many months.
At 8 months old, Brady landed in the hands of physicians at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, who performed a surgical procedure on his trachea to help him breathe on his own.
The operation had not been performed often, Demers said, but any possible success for her tiny son outweighed the risks.
“They took a piece of his rib and reconstructed his throat,” she said.
She called Brady’s team at Massachusetts Eye and Ear an amazing group of physicians who gave her son his life back.
Now 6, Brady loves school, enjoys hockey and is doing well, Demers said. He still has the remnants of being born so early with some health issues, but he is a happy little boy, she said.
Demers wants to run the marathon to raise money for the hospital that did so much for her son.
She calls Brady her “little fighter” and said she couldn’t think of a better way to give back for what the hospital did for her son.
The Massachusetts Eye and Ear team has already raised upward of $500,000 toward its goal. Demers has raised about $2,000 of her $6,000 Boston Marathon goal.
To learn more about Brady’s story or to support Demers’ marathon run, visit crowdrise.com/teameyeandear/fundraiser/heatherdemers.