Health Care

Heart to Heart: April’s Story of Resilience

Family laughing in front of house

February is National Heart Month, a time to celebrate the importance of an organ that we often forget does so much for our bodies. According to The American Heart Association, nearly half of all adults in the United States have some type of cardiovascular disease. Think about it, chances are you or someone you know is suffering from some form of heart disease.

April Von Moxey’s story is nothing short of extraordinary. April was a fifth-grade teacher in her mid-30’s, who ran and biked frequently, when everything changed. One day, a typical run turned into a nightmare. April texted her husband Kevin that she was feeling immense chest pain. They arrived at the AdventHealth emergency room and were rushed right in because of the severity of her chest pain. A cat scan then confirmed a diagnosis: April had a rare form of flesh-eating pneumonia that was attacking her lungs. She was given less than a 3% chance of survival.

She was transported to AdventHealth Orlando. Kevin became April’s source of strength and inspiration. He was determined to always be a source of positivity around her because he was certain she would survive this diagnosis. Kevin would help raise her spirits by using his guitar for “jam sessions” or adding cards from her students along the walls in her room.

April continued to get worse and was moved to ECMO life support. ECMO is a life support machine that helps patients when their lungs or heart aren’t working because of a life-threatening illness. Then, Kevin made the decision to try to wake her up with a procedure. He knew if she was awake and aware of what was going on, she would fight this disease head on. April defied all odds and surprised everyone by waking up while in the ICU. She was supposed to be on ECMO life support for three to four weeks, but she was on for only six days.

April’s motivation was to get back to life with her family and students. On the day she left the hospital she went straight to an assembly at her school, Tavares Elementary. She now enjoys coaching cross country and track with her husband.

She credits AdventHealth for being there, especially the ECMO unit and team, when she and her family needed it the most. “I thank you for the skilled care, the love and support that you gave to my husband because I was asleep.”

In 2018, we launched The Bush Family Advanced Surgical Unit to treat patients like April. Your generous donations of philanthropy go to life saving equipment, the same equipment that was used on April. Our hospital was started by the community, for the community and we strive to help others every day through our mission-extending the healing ministry of Christ.

If you would like to donate to support Cardiovascular Care in your community, click here.

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