August 31, 2011

Nine-year old sets up lemonade stand to support Harborview and Medic One

UW Health Sciences/UW Medicine

Lily James, 9, sold lemonade on a hot August day to raise money for Harborview and Medic One out of gratitude for saving her life after a boating accident on Lake Washington.

Greg James

Lily James, 9, sold lemonade on a hot August day to raise money for Harborview and Medic One out of gratitude for saving her life after a boating accident on Lake Washington.

Her Medic One crew was led by paramedic Phil Pierson. The crews  first-responder skills were key in saving the child and her limb in the critical minutes after the accident. They rushed her to Harborview Medical Center, where she spent nearly 10 hours in surgery.

Her foot was re-attached by a team of trauma experts led by Dr. Nicholas “Nick” Vedder, UW professor and chief of plastic surgery in the Department of Surgery and joint professor of orthopedic surgery.

Vedder is noted for his work in reconstructive microsurgery. He kept Lily’s right foot viable by restoring blood flow with two vessel grafts from her upper leg. Later he transplanted a segment from one of her broad torso muscles to replace tissue around the ankle.

On a hot weekend this August, Lily set up a lemonade stand to raise money for  Harborview and Medic One to thank them for saving her life and repairing her foot. She raised more than $200.

Pierson and Lily will be on the pitchers mound at Safeco Field Wednesday, Sept. 14, to throw the first pitch as the Seattle Mariners face the New York Yankees. Medic One will be honored at the game and the Medic One Foundation will benefit from ticket sales. Pierson will receive the Spirit of Team Play Award, which honors a paramedic in our region each year who best models compassion, dedication, enthusiasm, professionalism, and service to the community

Lily wears a compression stocking to help with blood circulation in her foot.  She has returned to skiing and playing soccer. Her father, Greg James, said that she is continuing physical therapy and may have another surgery in the future.  He commended his daughter for her bravery.

“Shes sweet, too,” he added. “Im proud that she thought to do this and give the money to two great organizations – Harborview and Medic One.”