As Aaron Willis danced with his fraternity brothers late into the night at Valparaiso University’s first annual Dance Marathon, he did so knowing his dancing would make a big difference in the lives of Indiana kids — kids just like his nephew.
“My nephew wasn’t supposed to live past the age of five months,” Willis explained. “I remember visiting him in the hospital — I walked in and instantly cried.”
Willis’ nephew was a patient at Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis, one of the country’s top pediatric hospitals. He was born prematurely and suffered a number of complications after his early birth. “He was born one pound one ounce,” Willis said. “He’s had multiple heart failures, including one that lasted more than 30 minutes. He cannot breathe on his own. He had to get a tracheotomy.”