Grants Pass School Holds 'Penny War'

Kaleb Lahr, 3, was diagnosed with aortic stenosis after his birth in August 2010. He also was suffering from mild mitral stenosis valve regurgitation and endofibroelastosis (a rare condition). He has endured surgeries, hospital stays and numerous visits to doctors and specialists in his three years of life. His most recent surgery was during Congenital Heart Defect (CHD) Awareness Week, Feb. 7–14.

Kaleb’s big brother, Allan, attends the Grants Pass Adventist School. In recent years, the school has rallied behind the Lahr family with prayers and financial support. Last year, baked goods and "gently loved" toys were sold, and a quilt was stitched together from pieces bought by families.

For CHD Awareness Week 2014, the students engaged in a "penny war" between classes. Everyone brought in pennies, while nickels, dimes, quarters and dollars were "bombs" that could be used to put a rival class in a "negative" balance. When all was said and done, this Adventist school raised $3,169 in the "battles," which will assist the Lahrs with mounting medical bills.

Lindsey Lahr, Kaleb's mother, successfully lobbied to have Kaleb's Law passed in Oregon. This requires all hospitals to "pulse ox" test all newborns. This is a safe, cheap and effective way to test for congenital heart defects. Kaleb was near death before his congenital heart defect was detected. The sooner a heart issue can be detected, the sooner treatment can begin.

March 20, 2014 / Oregon Conference