Auburndale's Inspiration Receives Her Own Independence Day with a Life-Changing Gift from Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co. - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Auburndale's Inspiration Receives Her Own Independence Day with a Life-Changing Gift from Safe Step Walk-In Tub Co.

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SOURCE Safe Step Cares

Lacey Pate, 14-Year Old with Rare Disease, Chosen as a Recipient of Safe Step Cares

AUBURNDALE, Fla., July 2, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Lacey Pate has been called Auburndale's Inspiration. She was born with an extremely rare genetic disorder called King Syndrome. Her family was advised that Lacey would not be able to live outside of the womb. She is now 14.

She spent the first 32 days of her life at Tampa General and had her first surgery at 3 weeks old. Lacey has severe kypho-scoliosis which caused her spine to crush her lung, so she was on a ventilator and gradually made her way to oxygen 24/7. She has chronic respiratory insufficiency, webbing of the neck, low set ears with severe hearing loss (she wears hearing aids) and Arthrogryposis.

She has now had a total of 47 surgeries. Since having these life-saving surgeries she only has to have oxygen at night, while flying, when she is sick, and after surgery during her recovery. After her most recent surgery in May, Lacey's lungs collapsed and she was put on a ventilator and had to have a chest tube placed. She has been in critical condition several times but she is a miracle girl who just refuses to let the condition define her.

Safe Step Walk-In Tub Company heard about Lacey's story and found her online donation site. Through its award-winning national program of giving, Safe Step Cares, the Nashville-based company delivered state-of-the-art tub to Lacey at no cost to the family in May.

"We were moved by Lacey's story, how the community has rallied around her," said Mike Duffer, president and founder of Safe Step Walk-In Tub, who flew in for the event in order to meet Lacey and her parents. "We came upon her online campaign and decided that after all she and her family had been through, we would surprise them by giving her a tub that will change her life."

Safe Step became aware of Lacey via a letter written by Tim O'Brien, who heard about Lacey's situation despite never having met her. Safe Step decided to fly Tim and his wife Daryl to Auburndale in order to meet Lacey and her parents. That will happen later in July of 2014.

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