- Children’s Heart Foundation
- Children’s Heart Foundation: History
- Children’s Heart Foundation: Leadership
The Children’s Heart Foundation was created after the tragic death of the 8 year old son of Betsy and Steve Peterson, who died on January 3, 1995. If Sam had been born just 20 years earlier, he would have died immediately after his birth, but because of modern technology, faith and love, Sam was able to overcome his congenital heart defect until he suddenly collapsed and died from multiple organ failure which was the outcome of his heart suddenly collapsing. Because of the research that had been undertaken until then was Sam permitted to bring much love and joy to all those who knew him during his 8 short years of life which was granted him.
The response of the Petersons to the death of their beloved son was to create the Children’s Heart Foundation. They understood that they were given the gift of life for 8 wonderful years through research, and they decided that through research more lives could be prolonged, and hopefully even saved. With the support and love of family and friends, Steve and Betsy brought together medical professionals, colleagues and friends to form the Board of Directors of the Children’s Heart Foundation, which was officially incorporated in the state of Illinois in June, 1996.
Until today the Children’s Heart Foundation is the only foundation solely dedicated to funding research for diagnosis, treatment and prevention of CHD, and has given over 3.6 million dollars to at least 37 ground-breaking research studies into CHD.