Meet the Gross family!
Michael and Michelle Gross were expecting their second child in Idaho Falls, ID. In February of 2021, they found during an ultrasound that their daughter, Isabella, would be born with a heart defect called Hypoplastic left heart syndrome. Isabella would need care at Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah. Over the next few months of her life, Isabella had two open heart surgeries and many stays in the hospital with complications.
In January of 2022, Isabella was life-flighted to Primary Children’s, again. This time it was heart failure. Isabella received a Berlin Heart in February, as her condition deteriorated. This was installed as a bridge to heart transplant. Having the Berlin Heart meant that she had to be at the hospital 24/7. She received her life-saving heart transplant in October and was able to come home at the end of November. Isabella has been doing amazing with only a few complications. She is stable and they are so grateful for Isabella’s second chance at life!
Their family relocated to Utah to be closer to the hospital and for Isabella to receive the care she needs for the next few years. Michael had to find a new job and they started from zero again, but are happy to be together as a family.
About the Walli Gives Back Program:
When Walli Cases was created, owners Nick and Jenna Emery were recently married and both emerging from what they would describe as the darkest times of their lives. They are both passionate about reaching out to others in need because of the huge outpouring of love and support they received during their trials, including Jenna becoming a widow with an 8-month-old son and more recently losing her mother to cancer, and Nick going through divorce. When they created Walli cases, they wanted to help others feel the same hope and encouragement, and the Walli Gives Back program was created. Each month, Walli chooses a family to support. This quote by Natalie Norton sums up why they are both devoted to "giving back" to others in their time of need: "There is always a light. Find it. Follow it. And then turn around and shine it as brightly as you can for those still feeling their way through the darkness."