A noteworthy benefit event will take place in Henderson this month to help support the ongoing medical needs of Camden Vancura, a resilient one-year-old boy.
Camden is the son of Blake and Jennifer Vancura. While the family resides in Lincoln, Blake is originally from Henderson, and Jennifer is from the Milford area. They were married in April of 2017, and seven months later were elated to be expecting their first child. Before they could even meet him, however, they learned that Camden had duodenal atresia, a blockage in the stomach area, and Down Syndrome (Trisomy 21). Anticipating his birth was difficult with the many unknowns, but Blake explained, “We were determined to raise our son with all our effort, regardless of the challenges we knew we were going to face.”
Camden was born on July 3, 2018, and had surgery the very next day to repair the duodenal atresia. He was in the NICU at Children’s Hospital in Omaha for two weeks. “Camden very quickly won over our hearts when he was born. We’re so blessed to have him in our lives.”
Most recently, Camden has been experiencing seizures caused by abnormal brainwave patterns known as infantile spasms. These can damage the brain, so the condition needs to be treated aggressively. Attempting to resolve this, Camden is trying his third medication. His treatment began at Children’s Hospital in Omaha, and he has now been traveling to Minnesota for care. The family will return to St. Paul in October for another EEG to see how the treatment is progressing.
Described as a sweet boy with a calm demeanor, Camden is playful and quick to give smiles. He has faced many recent challenges, however, with seizures, medications, and hospital stays, that mark him differently than the brightness they know. Blake and Jennifer are hopeful that the latest medication has pointed to signs of his spiritedness peeking through again.
The idea for the benefit came this summer from Blake’s graduating class of 1999. One of the coordinators, Christy Boschee, shared, “Blake and Jennifer had to cancel their plans to attend our class reunion in July due to the onset of Camden’s seizures. When the idea of coordinating a silent auction came up at dinner, everyone emphatically agreed we wanted to do something to help support Blake and his family. We are moved by and appreciative of all the community support and hope this event will help Blake and Jennifer as they search for answers for Camden.”
As for the Vancuras, this act is deeply meaningful. Blake expressed, “I cannot put into words how much we appreciate this. Friends that I graduated high school with twenty years ago, as well as others, even considering putting this on for us is incredible. I know they have put so much time and effort into it. To still receive this kind of support from people in the town I grew up in, as well as support from friends and coworkers we have met over the years, is just amazing. We are extremely thankful for those attending or contributing to Camden’s benefit.”
If you would like to join this event, there will be a Silent Auction and Pancake Feed (freewill offering) at Heartland Community Schools on Sunday, September 22, from 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.
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