Community rallying to help 6-year-old Wichita girl in need of heart transplant

Published: Feb. 21, 2020 at 10:50 PM CST
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A community rallies around a 6-year-old Wichita girl fighting for her life. Family members say Dixie was born with a rare heart disease and last weekend had to be transported to a hospital in Denver.

Dixie's aunt, Liz Chrispens, says at six months old, Dixie was diagnosed with genetic cardiomyopathy, the same disease that caused her father's death.

Through her health struggles, Dixie remains a happy little girl, Liz says.

"She could light up a room," she says.

After her diagnosis as an infant, Dixie's prognosis wasn't encouraging.

"At six months, they just wanted her to try to live as long as she could with the heart she had," Liz says. "Put her on medicine for it, and she's lived great. You wouldn't even know she was sick if you didn't know her."

That was until last week when it became clear Dixie wasn't doing well.

"By Sunday she was worse, she wasn't getting any better," Liz says.

At the emergency room, Liz says Dixie "was pretty much almost gone."

That same day, she was transported to Denver.

"From there, we have found out her heart has completely failed," Liz says. "She will not come home without a heart transplant."

She says it's a situation that's taken a toll on the family.

Friends of the family have stepped up in support, including the start of a Facebook fundraiser to help Dixie's mother (Liz's sister) with medical and living expenses.

"My sister, I love her. She's got to be the most strongest mom I know," Liz says.

You can learn more about Dixie's story and contribute to help her and her mother here:

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