Benefit concert to be held for Yukon teen


Ethan Ellis is your typical 17 year old, who has had to overcome something that is anything by typical. In September of 2017 he almost lost his life.

"I don't remember the first few weeks of being there honestly. I was just overwhelmed with so much information that I was drained and I think he was in shock just as much. It was just a lot," said Ethan's mother, Chandra Sowers.

Ethan was diagnosed with a heart murmur at four months old. His family was told he would need multiple surgeries. Within months, doctors diagnosed him with VSD, a condition where there's a hole in the heart. At 15 years old Ethan had already undergone five open heart surgeries.

"I did notice that I couldn't run as much as the other kids or do as much because I would lose breath," said Ethan.

When Ethan turned 17, he was admitted to St. Louis Children's Hospital. The doctors said he had congestive heart failure and needed an immediate heart transplant. His mother recieved the devastating news that without the transplant, Ethan would die.

"I don't think we realized that it had gotten as bad as it was. He wouldn't have made it another year," said Sowers.

The road to recovery is far from over for Ethan and his family. The Children's Organ Transplant Association is helping to raise money for future transplant related expenses. His family is also still recovering from the expense of the transplant itself, and months off from work.

"Bills don't stop because we're not working or because something is happening so it got difficult. He's 17 he's going to be on his own and I don't want him to be in college and worrying about how he's going to pay for medications," said Sowers.

FOX 25 told you about this fundraising effort in November. Hunter Kennedy was watching.

"I saw a story through FOX 25 and it caught my attention. Someone very close to me had to have an open heart surgery and he was younger. So I decided to reach out and do whatever I could to help them out," said Kennedy.

Kennedy has been working tirelessly to organize a concert that will benefit Ethan, and the COTA fund set up for him.

"I was just shocked that somebody even thought to do something like that. For me," Ethan said.

Kennedy tells FOX 25 he didn't know if Ethan could attend his concert. Ethan is back in Oklahoma and says he is thrilled to be able to go.

"It's been very exciting. We thought for a while that we weren't going to be here for it. I thought we'd still be there, but we're so excited that we get to go," said Sowers.

The concert to benefit Ethan will be held March 24th. To buy tickets click here.

If you would like to donate to Ethans recovery fund click here.

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