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Patient Stories - Journey to Healing

Each month, Arkansas Children's Hospital features patients who have undertaken an incredible Journey to Healing. These are stories of kids and families who are fighting hard so that their dreams of a happy and healthy childhood can be realized. In each, you'll find special services highlighted so you can learn more about the teams that help these children and so many others on their winding journeys. These patients inspire team ACH, and we know they'll inspire you too!

Featured Stories

Jose Ochoa

  • Journey to Healing: Jose Ochoa
    Just by looking at 12-year-old Jose Ochoa of Bentonville, Ark. and his winning smile, you would never know he once suffered from a very painful obstruction of his left kidney that sidelined him from his favorite sport, football.

Matthew Kamanga

  • Journey to Healing: Matthew Kamanga
    It was not the news that Kelli Kamanga expected. Her home and heart were full with five adventurous toddlers, including a set of twins, and she was joyful to be pregnant for the fourth time.

Dyer Bailey

  • Journey to Healing: Dyer Bailey
    Dyer Bailey took a small tumble from bed one evening. When it happened, his family never imagined they’d be spending the next few weeks of their lives at Arkansas Children’s Hospital. Find out how the Baileys coped during weekly updates of Dyer’s Journey to Healing.

Julia Hornok

  • Journey to Healing: Julia Nornok
    Texarkana teen, Julia Hornok, recovers from spinal fusion surgery at Arkanas Children's Hospital. Within six weeks of the major procedure to correct adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, Julia was back in the studio dancing three hours, two nights a week.

Damiya Smith

  • Journey to Healing: Damiya Smith
    Damiya Smith, 13, loves to watch TV and movies, and the journey of her past 13 years could certainly make for a heart-warming script with Damiya starring as the heroine. Born with Down syndrome, Damiya has also battled and defeated leukemia.

Sunni Ackley

  • Journey to Healing: Sunni Ackley
    Congenital heart defect patient Sunni Ackley has been treated at ACH since before she could walk. She faced open-heart surgeries as a child, and always knew she would need a new pulmonary valve as an adult. But a new procedure offered at ACH gave her an option for faster recovery, greatly improving her experience.

Caanan Sandy

  • Journey to Healing: Canaan Sandy
    Diagnosed with Down syndrome at birth, Canaan Sandy has had a medically-complex journey that's taken him from a Cedar Grove farm all the way to New York City, with many stops in between! Read more about the Razorbacks' and Arkansas Children's Hospital's no. 1 fan.

  • Journey to Healing: Amy Fairbanks
    Hi, I’m Amy Fairbanks and I was diagnosed with a vascular malformation. I went from patient in October of 2010 to a public relations intern in June of 2014. Here is my ACH story.

  • Henry’s Hike to Healing,
    Neonatal Intensive Care (NICU)

    Nikki Toth and her husband, Steve, of Fayetteville, Ark., were ecstatic to learn that they were expecting their second child to join their daughter, An Na. This time, they would welcome a baby boy who they would name Henry.
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