Family and friends of little girl who underwent gruelling heart surgery set to walk from Leeds to Chesterfield for charity

Family and friends of a Chesterfield girl who underwent open heart surgery are preparing to walk nearly 50 miles continuously to raise money for a vital charity.

Wednesday, 4th August 2021, 9:56 am
Updated Wednesday, 4th August 2021, 9:57 am

The walk – from Leeds General Infirmary to Chesterfield – will take place on September 11, the anniversary of Callie Cassidy’s eight-hour operation.

It will bring in money for the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund.

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Callie Cassidy.

Callie’s mum Jodie, 36, a nurse, said: “Callie was born without complications on October 22, 2016.

“The first few weeks of her life went well until she stopped thriving – she wasn’t feeding right and wasn’t gaining weight.

“The local amazing GP sent Callie straight up to the hospital where she was seen by an amazing peadiatrician, who heard a heart murmur.

“The very next day we were sent to Leeds hospital to the children’s cardio department.

Best of luck to everyone taking part in the upcoming fundraiser.

“After many tests and anxious waits we were told Callie had a heart defect – PAPVD, to be precise, and a large hole in her heart.

“We were absolutely devastated by this – we thought the worse because we didn’t have any awareness of congenital heart defects.

“Lots and lots of hospital visits, tests and waits later, just near her first birthday, Callie underwent a gruelling eight-hour open heart surgery to repair her heart.

“The wait while she was in surgery was excruciating and being away from our eldest daughter back in Chesterfield was equally as tough, but we were provided a room, kitchen facility, free parking and information packs all from the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund.

“We are extremely grateful and proud to report that Callie’s surgery was a success.

“Her heart is currently functioning well and she is growing and developing well.

“Callie was given a special teddy, medal and certificate to say what a heart warrior she is.

“There have been lots of other health complications with Callie, some of which are ongoing, but we are so grateful and proud, and thankful to everyone who has supported us on this journey.

“We now feel it’s the right time to try and give something back.”

To sponsor the team on their fundraising walk, visit

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