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Helping Harper

Janet, Harper and mother, Tara on February 16th.

Janet, Harper and mother, Tara on February 16th.

The granddaughter of Mike and Janet Stapleton, Harper Stapleton, is suffering from a rare disease. At a time in her life when she should be playing and giggling and exploring, the bright 15 month old Harper lies in a hospital bed sedated. Harper has been afflicted with seizures, is enduring a feeding tube and respirator, as doctors try to diagnose what is happening to her neurologically. She has endured invasive tests of all kinds. Doctors are doing everything they can to pinpoint the cause of severe seizures and respiratory distress, but the indications are that she has anti-nmda receptor encephalitis. It’s a very rare condition and she will be the youngest recorded person diagnosed with this disease.

Harper shortly before becoming ill.

Harper shortly before becoming ill.

While Harper has been flown from Sinai Children’s Hospital in Baltimore to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, the family is awaiting test results from the spinal fluid from Mayo Clinic. Doctors are hopeful of returning Harper to health, but the average hospital stay is ten weeks for older patients with the disease and it could be much longer for younger ones.

While the expenses continue to add up, Harper’s parents must be away from home and work to be with their daughter during this critical time. Medical expenses will be astronomical and most likely ongoing for some time. An account has been established at the Mutual of Omaha Bank so that friends can help Harper and the Stapleton Family. Please consider making a donation to alleviate the burden. To make a contribution, make your check payable to the “Stapleton Family Fund” and send it to: Stapleton Family Fund, Mutual of Omaha Bank, Attn: Ms. Dianna Dohm, 1770 San Marco Road, Marco Island, Florida 34145


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