Mother of baby born with half a heart needs help to buy a car - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Mother of baby born with half a heart needs help to buy a car

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PHOENIX (KSAZ) - It's been a tough year for Ryder Chacon and his family. He was born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome, which means the left side of his heart didn't develop and his heart only has two valves instead of four.

On top of that, his family is grieving the loss of his father who recently died in a car crash. Now, they're worried about Ryder's mom. She drives 80 miles round-trip to a hospital every day, but her car might die on her as well.

“You come here to the hospital you hold him and you hug him but it's just not the same to have him home with you to snuggle and just being in fear every day what is tomorrow gonna bring,” said Jeanette Chacon, Ryder's Great-Grandmother.

Ryder's family lives every day in fear of losing their baby boy.

“He's gone through three open heart surgeries, he's spent his whole life here. We've gone home a couple times, but had to come right back,” said Caila Dugger, Ryder's mother.

Doctors tell her, Ryder's condition is constantly changing.

“They pretty much tell me he doesn't follow the rules. He's just all over the place. He's back and forth all the time, “ Dugger said.

The fear of loss is even more heightened now after Ryder's dad was suddenly killed in a car crash on his way to work a few months ago.

“He worked hard to go to work every day. This accident, it shouldn't have happened,” Chacon said.

The grief fresh in her mind,
Chacon is worried about Ryder's mom and her safety as she travels to and from the hospital.

The 13-year-old car she drives has 320,000 miles on it and it leaks more than a quart of oil every day. Plus, three motor mounts are cracked or broken and the transmission is going out.

“She has to have transportation. She has to have something she can depend on and we can feel comfortable with her driving it. We just don't have the money and she doesn't, of course, have money,” Chacon said.

With the provider of the family gone, and Ryder fighting for his life in the hospital, Dugger doesn't know if she can handle any more heartbreak or unexpected car emergencies. She just knows…

“Just that we need help, and it would mean a lot,” Dugger said.

The family has set up a Go Fund Me account called 'Ryder's Heart.' They're hoping to raise enough money to get an affordable sedan that gets good gas mileage for Ryder's family.


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