"She's going to defy the odds," Mother credits March of Dimes for saving daughter's life

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"She's going to defy the odds," Mother credits March of Dimes for saving daughter's life

By Rikki Mitchell. CREATED Apr 27, 2014

TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Elisa Jennings thought everything was normal.

"I was at work and my water broke," she said. "And I knew that was not right."

Not right because it happened 12 weeks too soon. The doctors told Jennings she had a healthy baby, but when she got to the hospital, she heard the opposite.

"The next thing I know, she said I have six minutes to deliver this baby," said Jennings. "They had to assemble an operating team an anesthesiologist, and by 4:14 she was born."

The next few weeks went by in a blur.

"She was hooked up to everything possible," said Jennings. "She had to have a blood transfusion at 10 days old, she was given all these drugs and I came to find out how much the March of Dimes was involved with that."

Her daughter Makenna is now 10 years old and perfectly healthy, but Makenna knows it wasn't always this way.

"I think how sad it is that I survived and some other babies didn't," Makenna said.

Elisa and Makenna were this year's ambassador family at the annual March for Babies walk held at Reid Park Sunday.

Organizers hope the annual walk raises awareness about March of Dimes, a non-profit research foundation.

March of Dimes pioneered the therapy Makenna received during those first weeks. They say Makenna is a success story.

"It's possible to be healthy at the end of what could be a very scary start," said Jessica Celentano, division director of the March of Dimes Southern Arizona.

"I always thought you know what? She's going to defy the odds," said Jennings. "And she just did. And truly without the doctors and the funding from March of Dimes, we wouldn't be here."


For more information about March of Dimes and the annual walk visit marchforbabies.org.



Rikki Mitchell

Rikki Mitchell

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Rikki Mitchell is a proud University of Arizona grad and joined the KGUN9 team after graduation. Rikki reports for the evening newscasts.