Honduran toddler heading home after life-saving surgery in San Antonio

Nestor Ortiz receives life-saving heart surgery, thanks to HeartGift San Antonio

SAN ANTONIO - A toddler from Honduras who came to San Antonio to receive a life-saving surgery, will return to his home country on Tuesday.

19-month-old Nestor Ortiz received the critical surgery in June, and will be flying home with his grandmother.

“Here in San Antonio, we were the second chapter of HeartGift, and we have helped 27 children,” said Leslie Met, executive director of HeartGift San Antonio, the organization that helped sponsor Nestor’s surgery. “Nestor is our 27th in five years, so we're very excited about the achievements we've been able to accomplish here.”

HeartGift San Antonio, a non-profit organization, brings children from around the world to receive life-saving treatment for heart defects. Nestor was born with a congenital heart defect, and if left untreated, would not have survived into adulthood. Doctors say he had a hole in his heart, which resulted in low oxygenation of blood, and trouble breathing.

“So now his recovery in Honduras should be pretty uneventful,” said Dr. Lauren Kane, one of the congenital heart surgeons on Nestor’s team. “He will be able to run and play and do everything he would do as a normal little boy without a heart defect.”

Nestor’s grandmother, Irma Galindo, said she is grateful to all the people who helped her grandchild, and to Wanda Croft and her family, who opened her home to them for the past several weeks. 

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