Hope in Grace

Hope in Grace
Grace’s Story

 On April 1, 2008 Tony and Jaclyn Doffin learned that they would soon be blessed with triplets! Just one week later they were told “Baby B” was not healthy. Throughout the remainder of Jaclyn’s pregnancy, they continued to learn more about what was wrong with her. She was given a fetal diagnosis of hypoplastic right ventricle with tripcuspid atresia, pulmonary atresia, and aortic transposition. This meant that once Grace was born, her heart would not be able to effectively pump blood to the lungs to get oxygen. Fortunately, with a series of several surgeries, there was hope of a fairly normal lifestyle with a functioning three-chambered heart.

On Monday, September 8, 2008 Grace Lillian (Baby B) was born at 5:23am, just seconds after her brother Tyler and one minute before her sister Sophia. She weighed 3 pounds, 13 ounces and had a healthy cry. Tony and Jaclyn were overjoyed to welcome her to this world alive.

Shortly after she was born, her heart defect diagnosis was confirmed and, in addition, Grace was also diagnosed with heterotaxy syndrome. This meant that her organs were not in their correct places.

Grace remained in the NICU/PICU for 2.5 months. She was on a ventilator for approximately 2 months. The first month of her life, the doctors and nurses worked to keep her heart and lungs stable with medications and tried to get her to gain weight so that her first heart surgery would be more likely to succeed. On October 4th, Grace was baptized in the hospital in preparation for her first heart surgery the following week. After several postponements, Grace had her first open heart surgery on October 14th. It took a long time for Grace to recover from her surgery and she had several set-backs. She had abdominal surgery for a perforated colon on October 23rd. Grace struggled with learning to take a bottle and with digestion in general. Prior to her first surgery, she had really only been fed through a tube in her nose or through an IV.

Grace came home on November 22nd. Her family was ecstatic to have her there.

At home Grace worked on gaining weight and eating better and trying to keep up with her siblings. She had her second heart surgery on March 10th. Recovery went much more quickly this time and Grace came home again just three days after surgery. Grace was scheduled to have her third heart surgery, the Glenn procedure, on July 7th. Tony and Jaclyn brought her to the hospital that morning, but surgery was postponed again until the following morning. That evening Grace’s heart beat for the final time.

So those are the facts about Grace’s life, but WHO was Grace? Grace was a beautiful baby girl whose eyes lit up when she smiled. She touched the hearts of everyone who met her. Even the nurses and hospital staff adored her. They spent countless hours holding her during the time family members couldn’t be there with her. From the moment she was born we all knew there was something very special about her. She was wise way beyond her age. She would do things that no baby her age or size should be able to. She was an amazing gift. She taught us all about perseverance, patience, and being happy with what God has given you. Grace smiled through all the hurt and all the pain. We admired her courage and her strength. We miss her very much and we are proud to have been her parents. She brought us so much joy. We love her dearly. We are saddened that we only got a short ten months to be with her, but we are grateful for that time. For it is better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all.

Tony & Jaclyn Doffin

Our Purpose

Hope in Grace is a non-profit organization recently created following the passing of our beloved daughter, Grace Doffin, in the summer of 2009. We believe that Grace was given to us and taken from us for a reason. We strive to find meaning in such an unthinkable loss. It is our desire that Grace’s story will continue to have an impact on the lives of others, even after her death. We hope that Grace will never be forgotten. We are thankful for the life lessons she taught us, for the knowledge and expertise of the doctors and nurses who cared for her and for the sweet memories we have of Grace’s short life. It is our hope that this organization will help future children and their families find hope and joy in a long, healthy life after being diagnosed with congenital heart disease. It is for these reasons that we established this organization in her memory.

The purpose of the organization is:

  • To support pediatric cardiology research at the University of Minnesota by funding the Grace Doffin Pediatric Heart Research Fund, an endowment fund through the Minnesota Medical Foundation; 
  • To promote excellence in education in the field of neonatal and pediatric medical care; 
  • To reward exceptional neonatal and pediatric medical care personnel.
Hope in Grace Update:  March 1, 2011

Thank you for your previous support of Hope in Grace.  We are currently preparing for our 2nd Annual Hope in Grace Family Fun Run/Walk on April 16, 2011.  We hope that you will consider giving us your support again this year. 

There are several ways that you can choose to contribute to the success of our event.  Each method is crucial to our success:
 
 
 
 
 

 

  • Consider Event Sponsorship
  • Participate in the Family Fun Run/Walk on April 16, 2011: Event registration is now available!  

                  New this year:  3 easy ways to register for our event:

                    1) Download a paper registration form and mail in your

          registration fee to Hope in Grace

         OR

                    2) Download and mail/email/fax in your paper

                         registration form and make an online donation via

                      PayPal on our website: www.hopeingrace.org to

                            cover your registration fee.  On the “ways to donate”

                         page, just click on the yellow “Donate” button to make

         your payment.

         OR

                    3) Register for our event via our Running Room event website:   

                                http://www.events.runningroom.com/site/?raceId=6580

                         Registering through the Running Room does include

          online payment for your registration fee.

                        The Running Room charges an additional processing

                  fee for this option that ranges from $2.50-$6.50

                     depending on the amount of your registration fee. 

        On the upper-right corner of the page, click on “Volunteer”.  Enter your information including preference for type of volunteer position and your T-shirt size.  Once you have been assigned a volunteer position, you will receive an email confirmation from Hope in Grace.  Please email volunteers@hopeingrace.org with questions.

  • Donate cash or In-Kind Gift

          Donations can be made online at www.hopeingrace.org or

           they can be mailed to:

          Hope in Grace

          PO Box 490581

          Blaine, MN  55449

          We are still looking for donations for our silent auction as well. 

          Any silent auction donations that cannot be mailed to a

          PO Box can be sent to:

          Hope in Grace

          3324 119th Ave NE

          Blaine, MN  55449

 

          Hope in Grace is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization as

         designated by the IRS.  All donations made to our

         organization are tax-exempt.

          Please feel free to forward this information on to anyone else

          you think may be interested in supporting Hope in Grace.

Thank you, in advance, for any contribution you are able to give.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q:  What if my family is more than 4 people?

A:  The additional minimum donation for participation in the family fun run is $10/additional child prior to April 1st and $15/additional child after April 1st.

Q:  What is the purpose of the pledge sheet?

A:  Use of the pledge sheet is optional.  If you would like to have other individuals or businesses sponsor you as you participate in the event, you can use the pledge sheet to collect donations from other people to reach or add to your minimum donation.  Pledge sheets and corresponding donations are due at the time of registration on the day of the event.

Q: I want to participate/volunteer, but I live outstate, is there anything that I can do to contribute if I am not able to attend?

A:  You can make an online donation or mail a check to Hope in Grace if you would like to make a monetary donation.  If you’d like to make an in-kind donation of products or services to help make our event a success or contribute an item for the silent auction, please send an email to: donations@hopeingrace.org

Q:  Are bikes, roller blades, scooters, and strollers welcome?

A:  Yes.  Ride, roll or stroll at your own risk.

Q:  Can I bring my dog/pet?

A:  Unfortunately, we have to ask you to leave your pets at home for the Family Fun Run/Walk.  While we understand that to many people, your pet is a member of your family, we don’t want to add stress or cause problems for those with a fear of pets or allergies to them.  Service dogs are welcome.

Q:  I am not sure if I will be able to attend the event at this time, are you accepting race day entries?

A:  Yes.  Same day registration is available.  We unfortunately will not be able to guarantee T-shirt availability for same day entries.  We will do our best to accommodate your requests while our supplies last.  The minimum donation for same day entries is $25/person or $75/family of up to 4 people and $15/additional child.

Q:  Is Hope in Grace a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization?

A:  Yes.  All donations made to Hope in Grace are tax deductible.

Q:  Will the Hope in Grace Family Fun Run take place in inclement weather?

 
A:  Minnesota weather is always unpredictable and April is no exception.  Minnesotans know how to adapt to inclement weather conditions so come prepared!  Our event will take place, in one form or another, regardless of the weather conditions.

MARCH 22, 2011:  REGISTRATION REMINDER

 

Thank you to each of you who have already registered to participate or volunteer in the 2nd Annual Hope in Grace Family Fun Run, pledged to donate to our silent auction or sponsored our event.  Your support is greatly appreciated.
 
This message is a reminder that if you have not yet registered or donated and planned to do so, our early registration deadline is coming up very quickly.
 
Platinum level sponsors ($500+ donation) must have their logos submitted by this Friday, March 25th to be included on our event T-shirts.
 
To ensure T-shirt availability for you and your family, please register by Friday, April 1st.  We will continue to accept registrations after April 1st all the way up to and including the day of the event, but we would strongly encourage you to register prior to April 1st so that we can be better prepared for the amount of people who plan to attend.
 
Volunteers are still welcome and very much appreciated so please consider registering as a volunteer if you would prefer not to walk or run in the event.  All individuals who have verbally committed to volunteer should register as a volunteer on the running room website.
 
Sponsorship package details are attached to this message as well as a silent auction donation form.  If you have already pledged to donate a silent auction donation, or if you plan to do so, please fill out this form and email it back to me.
 
Below are reminders of registration options, both for participants and volunteers:
 
                    1) Download a paper registration form and mail in your registration fee to Hope in Grace
                                                                            OR
                    2) Download and mail/email/fax in your paper registration form and make an online donation via
                        PayPal on our website: www.hopeingrace.org to cover your registration fee.  On the
                        “ways to donate” page, just click on the yellow “Donate” button to make your payment.
                                                                            OR
                    3) Register for our event via our Running Room event website:   
                                http://www.events.runningroom.com/site/?raceId=6580
                         Registering through the Running Room does include online payment for your registration fee.
                        The Running Room charges an additional processing fee for this option that ranges from $2.50-
                        $6.50 depending on the amount of your registration fee. 

            On the upper-right corner of the page, click on “Volunteer”.  Enter your information including
              preference for type of volunteer position and your T-shirt size.  Once you have been assigned a volunteer
              position, you will receive an email confirmation from Hope in Grace.  Please email
              volunteers@hopeingrace.org with questions.  There are no registration or processing
              fees for volunteers.
              Hope in Grace
              PO Box 490581
              Blaine, MN  55449
     
              We are still looking for donations for our silent auction as well.  Any silent auction donations that cannot
              be mailed to a PO Box can be sent to:
              Hope in Grace
              3324 119th Ave NE
              Blaine, MN  55449
     
              Hope in Grace is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization as designated by the IRS.  All donations
              made to our organization are tax-exempt.
     
              Most importantly, please help us continue to spread the word about our upcoming event.  Please tell your family, friends, coworkers, etc. about Hope in Grace and encourage them to come and join us in supporting pediatric cardiology research.
      

     


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