Little heart patch helps one toddler make big strides

Good News

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Imagine finding out your unborn baby has a heart condition.

For one Wichita couple that was the case, but now years later they have so much to be thankful for.

Amber McColpin was just twenty weeks pregnant when she and her husband Stephen found out Ian had a heart condition, but she says with a tiny patch on the bottom two chambers of his heart the little guy is making big strides.

“Always enjoy the time that you have, whether it is good or bad,” Ian’s Dad Stephen McColpin said.

There is no greater joy than that a child’s laughter brings.

“There are times when I can still look at pictures of what happened you know and it just takes me right back to the stress and scary times,” Ian’s Mom Amber McColpin said.

The McColpin’s remember what it was like to hear Ian cry for the very first time.

“He was diagnosed with Tetralogy of Fallot,” Amber said.

Ian had open heart surgery when was just two months old.

“After the surgery, just seeing the color come back into his face and his body,” Ian’s Dad Stephen McColpin said.

Ian’s mother has a tattoo of her son’s irregular heartbeat, so she will always remember how it sounded before and how different it sounds now.

“The heartbeat, just, it sends shivers through me every time, not hearing the little flutter or the little palpitation that’s in there, and just knowing a nice, constant, steady beat, it’s just, it’s it,” Stephen said.

The heart surgery scar is barely visible now, and the McColpin’s say Ian has come so far, and is always learning new words.

“I go Chuck E. Cheese,” Ian said. 

“I love it! He’ll come over and say Chuck E. Cheese is his favorite thing right now, and we have to go there almost weekly,” Stephen said.

Amber says looking at her son now you would never know what he has been through.

“What I am most thankful for is that he is able to do everything, like any other kid can do,” Amber said.

She says they have the American Heart Association to thank for that, because due to research doctors were able to find Ian’s condition before he was ever born.

After celebrating two birthdays, the heart strong little guy has a special request for you.

“Walk with me,” Ian said.

Ian is hoping you come walk or maybe even run with him!

“I wish I could have been a part of it through the whole 25 years, but I plan on doing it for another 25 years, and everybody else and the organization that we have met, we love it greatly,” Stephen said. 

The American Heart Association 2019 Heart Walk & F.A.S.T. 5K is coming up on Saturday, June 8th at Wichita State University. 

Meteorologist TJ Springer and Kansas Today anchor Gwyn Bevel will be there that day and they sure hope you will join them.

To register or join an existing team visit: here 

You can also learn more on Facebook: here

Here is a the schedule of events:

7:30 a.m. | Festivities Begin, on the South Practice Field of WSU’s Charles Koch Arena
8 a.m. | F.A.S.T. 5K Begins
9:15 a.m. | Walk Begins 

To honor survivors of cardiovascular diseases there will be a group photo, before the walk.

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