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Father’s Day Run Will Benefit Premature Babies

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Father's Day run
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Christie Ileto joined WJZ's News Team in the fall of 2012. She was...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A local hospital is asking Baltimoreans to give back this Father’s Day by lacing up and running to help premature and ill babies at GBMC’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, or NICU.

Christie Ileto explains they’ve already raised $90,000.

This month will mean 25 years of running to raise money for the NICU unit at Greater Baltimore Medical Center.

“We already knew that within our first 48 hours there, it was a special place,” said Jamie Schroder.

And for the Schroders, it’s personal. They have scrapbooks that chronicle their time spent in the NICU after each daughter’s delivery. Hazel and Lillian are healthy now.

“We’ll never be able to repay the NICU for what they’ve given us, which is two beautiful, healthy children and we need to do whatever we can for them,” said Kelsey Schroder.

About 4,000 babies are delivered at the hospital a year. Ten percent come to the NICU for days, weeks or even months at a time. So the proceeds go toward improving care and updating hospital equipment.

This year, GBMC has raised about $90,000 going into the race but overall, more than $1.5 million since their first run 24 years ago.

“We’re going to use the funds to support,” said Dr. Howard Birenbaum. “They will help to improve their survival and reduce the incidents of complications of prematurity.”

Hazel and Lillian are showing their gratitude this Father’s Day by running to raise money and support the hospital that supported them.

“Thank you, GBMC NICU!” Hazel said.

It costs $25 to run in the race. So far, 500 people have signed up but organizers expect to have about 1,000.

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