Thank you to everyone who made the 2021 Footsteps for Families Walk Over the Hudson event our most successful to date! Together, we raised over $53,000!
Our cost to house a family per night is approximately $183.00. However, we ask a family to contribute $15 per night. No family is ever turned away if they are unable to make a donation.
Your generosity and perseverance will allow us to provide 3,533 nights to families when they need to call our House their home.
Meet Our Grand Marshal- Isabelle Grace Malone –
She was born October 3, 1998. As she grew, during her first few months it became apparent that she was delayed and a diagnosis of Ataxic Cerebral Palsy was given. Isabelle grew but struggled with crawling, sitting, cruising and trying to walk. She began using a walker and was eventually using a manual wheelchair to ambulate. At 8 years old she developed a seizure disorder which was managed with medication. At 11 years old she developed unknown GI issues causing her to not be able to eat and to lose a considerable amount of weight. During that that time, she was treated at Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital in Valhalla. After three months in the hospital in Valhalla she was transferred to Boston Children’s Hospital for a month before recovering enough to come home.
Isabelle always loved school and had attended Hyde Park Elementary but was now at the stage where she needed more support. She began attending Cardinal Hayes Day School in Millbrook, NY where she quickly became the social butterfly of the school.
In 2016, Isabelle developed an extremely high fever and pneumonia and was admitted to Vassar Hospital. It became apparent that her needs required more in depth attention and she was transferred to Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital once again. Isabelle suffered a hypoxic brain injury as well as encephalitis and was in the hospital for almost 5 weeks. It was during this hospital stay that we became acquainted with the Ronald McDonald House of the Greater Hudson Valley. My wife Kimberly and I were able to take turns being with Isabelle while staying at the House and getting much needed rest, mental recovery, and wonderful meals. This was our home away from home since we lived more than an hour away from the hospital. We were able to keep our sanity during this time greatly due to RMH.
In 2019, Isabelle needed to have her hip reconstructed at Boston Children’s Hospital (BCH). The surgery went fine as well as her initial recovery for 2 weeks at BCH. However, shortly after arriving home Isabelle developed an unknown infection and was admitted to Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital once again. She continued to struggle with the infection which ultimately began to affect more of her function, including her breathing. She was intubated 4 separate times before making the decision to have a tracheostomy. Isabelle has been ventilator dependent since that time in November of 2019. During this hospitalization my wife and I were able to stay at the RMH once again. The staff at the house were always so supportive and caring. The hot meals and warm bed were a welcome comfort while it felt like our world was falling down around us.
Isabelle is now at home with the care of a nurse during the daytime hours and her mother and father during the evening and nights. She lives with her two younger sisters and is surrounded by friends and family that she makes smile at every turn with her warm spirit, infectious laugh and perseverance through even the most overwhelming trials.
– Aaron Malone, Isabelle’s Father
Poughkeepsie, New York