My Story

Welcome to Nico's CaringBridge site. We've created it to keep friends and family updated. We thank you in advance for your support, words of hope, volunteering of your time, and encouragement when it matters most. Due to the ongoing costs of Nico's condition donations are also appreciated. There is an account set up at Chase Bank. You can go into any branch to donate to the "Nico Valentino Trust" or send to 221 Crest Rd, Glen Ellyn, IL 60137  if you are not able to make it to a branch and will be put in the account. 

Join us for a fundraising event May 11th at Beau Geste Salon in Barlett, IL. 

Nico James Valentino was born February 14, 2011.
He was born with Hypoplastic right heart syndrome. Hypoplastic Right Heart Syndrome is a congenital heart defect that has left Nico without a functioning right ventricle.With the right side of the heart being underdeveloped, the left side of the heart must pump blood to both the lungs and the rest of the body.  With only a half of his heart functioning, immediate medical intervention was required to save his life. Treatment of Hypoplastic Right Heart Syndrome consists of a series of heart surgeries, often spread out over several years.
The Fontan surgery is palliative not curative. Nico will eventually need a heart transplant.


Christy Tajak posted a new journal entry, "Sunday".

Nico is having a rough time :(. Still not eating and having a hard time keeping down the feedings through the ng tube. He will be seeing the pediatrician tomorrow hoping ... Read more

Christy Tajak posted a new journal entry, "First full day home!".

Saturday was Nico's first full day home. The whole family feels some relief to be home. Nico even asked to go up to bed :). And was happy to see his train table, his kitty ... Read more

Christy Tajak posted a new journal entry, "Nico's home".

While we are happy that Nico is home he still has a lot of recovering to do and many precautions that have to be taken at home. Due to doctors orders visitors must be ... Read more

Colleen Mocko posted a new journal entry, "Help Needed!".

As noted in Dawn's post, the Schwartz's are hopefully coming home tomorrow with Nico to receive at home care to help his recovery along. Obviously, the focus is going to ... Read more

amy kaminski signed Nico's Guestbook.

Oh this post brings back memories: Kate used to pull her NG tube out all the time when she was in the NICU!  At least he is getting the nutrition he needs to help him ... Read more

Colleen Mocko posted a new journal entry, "A Note from Dawn".

Our little Nico has been through so much, this is his eighth long term admittance to an ICU unit, his 3rd open heart surgery and his 6th surgery overall and he just turned ... Read more

Amanda Cyzen signed Nico's Guestbook.

In constant awe of your strength Nico! Everyday, heart wrenching as it is, I read your posts and am reminded to be grateful, thankful, positive and strong. You remind me ... Read more

Christy Tajak posted a new journal entry, "Day 7".

Today brought some more ups and downs. They removed his chest tubes which is a step in the right direction. But very painful removing the tubes and bad after effects. Dawn ... Read more

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