The Heart of a Fighter: Baby Prince is a healthy 2-year-old thanks to Diamond Children’s

Jamie and her husband had been trying to have a baby and in 2019 their wishes were fulfilled. But at 29 weeks gestation, they received some startling news about the baby’s development: the baby was not swallowing and had a heart condition.

Prince was born at Diamond Children’s Medical Center in November 2019 and was immediately transferred to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). He was diagnosed with a life-threating condition called Tracheoesophageal Fistula with Esophageal Atresia Type C. The condition results in the abnormal development of the esophagus, the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach, before birth. The condition effects breathing, as the fluid from the esophagus can get into the airway. Prince also was diagnosed with congenital heart disease.

Prince’s first surgery at just 4 days old was a tracheoesophageal fistula with atresia repair, to repair his esophagus and trachea. He would then have G-tube, or gastronomy surgery, to insert a feeding tube through his abdomen into his stomach to enhance his nutrition.

Prince’s time in the Diamond Children’s NICU included an episode where he stopped breathing and required intubation. Doctors later found that he had stuffed a seizure and a stroke. During a heart procedure at 11 months old, Prince’s heart stopped. He was brought back to life thanks to CPR. In July of this year, Prince had a five-hour, open-heart surgery.

Today, he is almost 2 years old, recovering and progressing nicely, exceeding all recovery expectations.

“He has so much energy and his doctor says that everything looks good and no more surgeries are needed,” says Jamie. “Diamond Children’s is the best place for care. Words cannot express how much I appreciate everyone at the hospital. The Child Life team at Diamond Children’s and the NICU/PICU nurses treat Prince like family. The University of Arizona mascots brought us Valentines, I love the Disney team, and Mr. Nature was very relaxing for Prince, singing him to sleep. Everything they do is so important for the children and also for the families. They help us parents, too.”

For Prince’s birthday this year, the family asked friends and family to donate to support children and families at Diamond Children’s Medical Center in lieu of gifts for Prince. “The community of support that is provided at Diamond Children’s is incredible. We’d like to thank the amazing cardiology team, surgeons, doctors, nurses, staff, child life and everyone who has come Prince’s way,” says Jamie.

El Tour de Tucson

Held annually the Saturday before Thanksgiving and sponsored by Banner - University Medicine, El Tour is a fundraising adventure ride attracting over 6,000 cyclists of all ages and abilities from throughout the United States and worldwide. Participants are beginners, intermediate, advanced, and professional cyclists riding 100% human powered bicycles.

Banner impacts the lives of thousands on a day-to-day basis and will help do its part in the cycling world this November, when riders from all over descend on Tucson and Southern Arizona for one of the top 10 best bicycling events in Arizona and the United States. Proceeds benefit a wide range of specialty care programs, technological innovations, and state-of-the-art medical facilities available to patients from birth through end of life at Diamond Children’s Medical Center in Tucson.

Register to Ride

To register to ride, please visit Be sure to select “Diamond Children’s Medical Center - Fundraiser”. Not a cyclist? Not a problem. You can still support the cause by creating or joining a fundraising team.