Stories about: Dr. Gerald Marx

Sonia’s story: Saving hearts a world away

ALL PHOTOS: COURTESY OF THE GEAMBASU/CONOVARU FAMILY

When Sonia Conovaru was born in Romania in 2007 with a number of complex congenital heart defects, she was given a 10 percent chance of living 12 months. Her mom, Oana Geambasu, a young acting student, didn’t know anything about health care, but knew she wasn’t willing to accept that outcome. It was the start of a journey that would take them thousands of miles and forever change the course of their lives.

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A biventricular repair for Jayce’s one-of-a-kind heart

Jayce, born with heterotaxy syndrome, crawls through a tube at the playground.Amanda Mattioli was working in Afghanistan as a government contractor and had just completed a whirlwind round of travel to three separate continents when she learned she was pregnant.

The helicopter unit that took her back to the main base, so she could return home for her pregnancy, gave her a unit sticker to commemorate her baby’s first helicopter ride. Little did she know it would also mark the beginning of a much longer journey for her and her son, William “Jayce” James.

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