Family of the Year

Elizabeth, David and Jakob Schultz



Family of the Year

David, Elizabeth and Jakob Schultz live in Highland, NY. In April 2014, at only seven months old, Jakob was airlifted from Vassar Hospital to Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital. He was admitted into the PICU as he suffered stroke-like symptoms and lost many functions, such as his ability to suck, swallow and eat. Extensive genetic testing was performed with hopes of diagnosing Jakob so that an effective treatment plan could be developed. It was concluded that Jakob has a very rare degenerative mitochondrial disease that manifests itself in seizures and stroke-like events when he is under stress.

Over the last five years, Jakob has “crashed” several times which required hospitalization and acute care in the PICU.  With each episode, Dave and Liz trusted the critical care team at Maria Fareri to care for their “little man” and Ronald McDonald House to take care of them as they tended to Jakob.

“The support that Ronald McDonald House has provided for our family over the past five years has been instrumental in allowing us to make sure that Jakob gets the best care available. Through his illness we have been thrust into a whirlwind of uncertainty, however, we are blessed that the Ronald McDonald House has been there to provide us some needed ‘certainties’ through their services.”

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