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Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Announces 54 Remarkable Kids as Its 2011 Champions

Ace Hardware presents the Champions’ weeklong experience in Orlando, Fla., and Washington, D.C., honoring a children’s hospital patient from every state

SALT LAKE CITY--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals® and Ace Hardware are recognizing 54 of the nation’s most courageous children as the 2011 Champions.

“The Champions program puts a face to the nearly 17 million children treated at our hospitals every year”

The annual program designates a Champion child from every state and Washington, D.C., who has bravely battled a serious injury or illness (there are 54 Champions due to several sibling representatives). The 2011 Champions range from three to 17 years old and have dealt with a wide variety of injuries and illnesses including genetic diseases, cancer, heart transplants, premature birth and traumatic accidents.

“The Champions program puts a face to the nearly 17 million children treated at our hospitals every year,” said John Lauck, president and CEO of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. “Our Champions are living testaments to the incredible work taking place inside our hospitals, and inspire us daily to raise as much money for these hospitals as possible so that every child has the best chance to overcome their medical challenges.”

The Champions and their families will travel to Orlando, Fla., and Washington, D.C., from October 19-26. In Orlando, the Champions will inspire thousands of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals sponsors, hospitals and media partners during the charity’s annual Celebration event at Walt Disney World where they will be honored in front of thousands at a special medal ceremony. The Champions will then take a chartered 767, provided by Delta Air Lines, to Washington, D.C., where they will tour the city, have a luncheon with Congressmen and visit the White House, where they traditionally meet with the President.

The Champions program is presented by Ace Hardware, the largest retailer-owned hardware cooperative in the industry. Ace Hardware is celebrating its 20th anniversary as a Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals supporter, having raised more than $46 million for the charity since 1991. In conjunction with the Champions program, Ace Hardware will conduct an in-store fundraising campaign this fall, where featured products from Procter & Gamble purchased at participating Ace stores will benefit Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

“At Ace, we believe in giving back to the communities we serve and we’re honored to do that through our work with Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals all across the country,” said Jimmy Alexander, president of the Ace Foundation. “We are proud of the partnership we have formed over the years with Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals and look forward to continuing our mission of giving.”

The program receives additional support from Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club, Delta Air Lines and Marriott International.

The 2011 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals Champions are:

State Name Age Affliction Treating Hospital Alabama Jalaysha Carter 5 Cancer University of South Alabama Children’s & Women’s Hospital Alaska Paige Galloway 11 Appendectomy with complications The Children’s Hospital at Providence Arizona Jacob Mockbee 13 Spina Bifida Tucson Medical Center Arkansas Haven McCormack 5 Heart Defect Arkansas Children’s Hospital California Mina Valentine 11 Cancer UC Davis Children’s Hospital Colorado Ayla Charness 10 ITP-Blood Disorder The Children’s Hospital Connecticut Marcquille Johnson 17 Sickle Cell Disease Connecticut Children’s Medical Center Delaware Julia Grumbine 12 Severe Food Allergies John’s Hopkins Children’s Center District of Columbia Tess & Alexander Theodorakos 8 Hemiplegic and Hypotonic Cerebral Palsy Children’s National Medical Center Florida Haley Richardson 10 Bone Cancer Wolfson Children’s Hospital Georgia Stephen & Matthew Huffman 3 Premature Birth Backus Children’s Hospital at Memorial University Medical Center Hawaii Maddy Wisser 14 Spina Bifida Kapi’olani Medical Center for Women & Children Idaho Gracy Lancaster 5 Wolfe Parkinson White Syndrome St. Luke’s Children’s Hospital Illinois Grace Vaugh 11 Stevens-Johnson Syndrome St. John’s Children’s Hospital Indiana Olivia Pierce 4 Retina Blastoma Riley Children’s Hospital Iowa Patience Duval 8 Malnourishment due to constricted esophagus University of Iowa Children’s Hospital Kansas Chance Armstrong 5 Premature Birth Via Christi Health Kentucky Ellie Nunn 5 Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Kosair Children’s Hospital Louisiana Taylor Oliver 10 Neuroblastoma CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital Maine Cody Oldham 4 Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia The Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital at Maine Medical Center Maryland Clayton Cowan 8 Immune System Disorder Johns Hopkins Children’s Center Massachusetts Carla Landron 5

Premature Birth, Cerebral Palsy

Children’s Hospital Boston Michigan Archer Granger 7 Lawn Mower Accident Hurley Medical Center Minnesota Emily Brown 11 Cerebral Palsy Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare Mississippi Sydney Gholar 7 Bilateral Wilms Tumor Blair E. Batson Hospital For Children Missouri Christopher Armstrong 12 Brain Infection St. Louis Children’s Hospital & Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center Montana Sotara Barnaby 10 Rubenstein–Taybi Syndrome Shodair Children’s Hospital Nebraska Juliana Scheopner 8 Brittle Bone Disease Children’s Hospital & Medical Center Nevada Colbie & Kenna Walker 3 Premature Birth St. Rose Dominican Hospitals New Hampshire Lily Savoy 5 Liver Transplant Children’s Hospital Boston New Jersey Gianna Trotter 14 Car Accident Children’s Specialized Hospital New Mexico Kyle Stepp 16 Bone Cancer University of New Mexico Children’s Hospital New York Mason Mitchell 4 Diaphragmatic Hernia Golisano Children’s Hospital North Carolina Jayla Turner 4 Complete DiGeorge Syndrome Duke Children’s Hospital and Health Center North Dakota Laine Nicholls 4 Accidental Gunshot Sanford Children’s Hospital Ohio Brad Harris 13 Rheumatic Fever Akron Children’s Hospital Oklahoma Lucy Hogan 6 Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia Children’s Hospital Foundation Oregon Hanna Dawson 12 Hurler’s Syndrome Rogue Valley Medical Center Pennsylvania Aiden Stowe 5 Car Accident Penn State Hershey Children’s Hospital Rhode Island Evan Huddon 12 Spina Bifida Hasbro Children’s Hospital South Carolina Matthew Chase 11 Heart Defect MUSC Children’s Hospital South Dakota Kelsey Barclay 7 Chromosomal Abnormality Rapid City Regional Hospital Foundation Tennessee Kennedy Griffith 14 Bone Cancer T.C. Thompson Children’s Hospital Texas Dustin Strelsky 13 Car Accident The Children’s Hospital at Scott & White Utah Reed Robinson 9 Head Injury Primary Children’s Medical Center Vermont Tony Granger 13 Polycystic Kidney Disease Vermont Children’s Hospital at Fletcher Allen Virginia Ben Millefolie 14 Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia Children’s Hospital of Richmond Washington Tristan Kuhlmann 13 Brain Tumor Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital and Seattle Children’s Hospital West Virginia Wyatt Smith 15 Cystic Fibrosis West Virginia University Children’s Hospital Wisconsin Vincent Forseth 12 Heart Transplant Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin Wyoming Emily Strand 7 Cystic Fibrosis The Children’s Hospital

To learn more about the program and to read each Champion’s individual story, please visit www.cmnhospitals.org/champions.

About Children's Miracle Network Hospitals

Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals® raises funds for more than 170 children’s hospitals across North America, which, in turn, use the money where it’s needed the most. When a donation is given it stays in the community, helping local kids. Since 1983, Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals has raised more than $4 billion, most of it $1 at a time. These donations have gone to support research and training, purchase equipment, and pay for uncompensated care, all in support of the organization’s mission to save and improve the lives of as many children as possible. Learn more at www.CMNHospitals.org.

About Ace Hardware

For more than 85 years, Ace Hardware has been known as the helpful hardware store in thousands of communities across America. Customers depend on Ace to help them take care of their homes quickly and easily so they can get on with their lives. In 2011, Ace ranked “Highest in Customer Satisfaction among Home Improvement Stores for the Fifth Consecutive Year,” according to J.D. Power and Associates. With 4,500 locally owned and operated hardware stores, Ace is the largest hardware cooperative in the industry. Headquartered in Oak Brook, Ill., Ace currently operates 14 distribution centers in the U.S. It also has distribution capabilities in Shanghai, China; Panama City, Panama; and Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Its retailers’ stores are located in all 50 states and more than 60 countries. For more information on Ace, visit www.AceHardware.com.

About the Ace Hardware Foundation

At Ace, we believe in giving back to the communities we serve. From busy and bustling cities to rustic and rural towns, we truly care about the communities in which we do business. This is why the Ace Hardware Foundation was established in 1991: to serve as an umbrella over the charitable fundraising efforts of Ace Hardware retailers, Ace Hardware Corporation and Ace vendors for the benefit of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

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