Emma's angels dance to raise funds for E. coli treatment costs - KMSP-TV

Emma's angels dance to raise funds for E. coli treatment costs

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She spent weeks fighting a dangerous E. coli infection that threatened to shut down her kidneys, but on Sunday, Emma Heidish danced to celebrate her recovery with supporters who gathered to help pay for her treatment.

Heidish has been out of the hospital for a few weeks, but this past weekend marked the first time she'd done any dancing in a long time.

"This is her first really extracurricular activity since she's been out of the hospital," Spencer Heidish said. "She's been waiting for this day for a long time."

She didn't do it alone either. The folks at Gleason's Gymanstics School were shaking a tail feather along with her to become one of her "angels."

The 7-year-old fell ill after visiting a petting zoo at a pumpkin patch, and the E. coli strand that caused her infection is a type that is made worse by antibiotics. Within days, Heidish's kidneys were threatening to fail, and she spent weeks at the ICU before she was strong enough to return home and half-days of school.

"She was in a really intensive part of the hospital for a long time, so it's really unimaginable what some of these expenses might be," Spencer Heidish explained.

Now, her mother's Zumba community is coming together to celebrate her struggle and help the family with their mounting medical bills. About 100 people turned out to become "angels" for Emma by dancing together and donating to cover the costs of surgery and dialysis.

"I just know medical issues are never cheap, and we want to be able to support Emma in any way we can," David Kennedy, spokesman for Gleason's Gymnastics School, said.

While the adults attended a party for Emma, she joined a younger class of kids in a fun dance class. She told Fox 9 she's feeling much better and enjoys dancing to her favorites, but she's still undergoing tests every other week.

Luckily, the party with a purpose isn't over yet. Another family-friendly benefit will be held on Dec. 7 to help the Heidish family. It will take place at Diamond Path Elementary School from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

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