Hearts 4 Kyra

A little girl's courageous battle with juvenile dermatomyositis

Our princess

Kyra is a healthy and happy 9 year old girl who battled a debilitating disease called Juvenile Dermatomyositis, a very rare auto-immune disorder in which the body's own immune system some how attacks the muscles and causes severe inflammation.  Although there is no known cure for this disease, treatment with drugs such as prednisone had positive results  With the help and love of all of the doctors, nurses, therapists, teachers, family and friends that continued to work and pray for her, Kyra beat this disease and is now in remission.    

Kyra gets a cast

Kyra fell down at school today and as a result got a buckle fracture.  Thanks to the awesome team at Shriner's Hospital for all their help. 

Happy New Year!

It's 2011 and we're off to a great year!  Kyra recently stopped her steroid medication and the doctors are amazed at how well she is doing.  Check out some of the latest pictures. 

Pilot for a Day

On July 16, 2010 Kyra was invited to Hickam AFB on O'ahu by the 535 Airlift Squadron to be a "Pilot for a Day".  This program is a collaborative effort between the Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children's Rehabilitation Occupational Therapy Department and the Air Force.  Kyra was very fortunate to be nominated for this honor and had the time of her life.  Read more in the latest blog and don't forget to check out the pictures.  Mahalo.  (Updated on July 19, 2010)

 

EXTRA!  EXTRA!  Kyra's story in the paper  (posted August 13, 2010)

Read about Kyra's exciting day at Hickam AFB in this newspaper article that was posted online here.  Also keep voting for the Pepsi Refresh Challenge all through August because Cure JM has moved up to 4th place.

Helping a great cause

As you already know, Kyra suffers from a very rare disease that has no cure.  The Cure JM Foundation is the only one in the country that is geared specifically to finding a cure for Juvenile Dermatomyositis.  The only way to make this possible is through research grants and funding.  The Pepsi Company is offering a tremendous opportunity by putting up $250,000 to the foundation that receives the most votes by the end of July.  Please go to the latest blog to read on how to help the Cure JM Foundation, and help Kyra as well or click on the widget below to cast your vote now.  Mahalo.

(Posted on July 5, 2010)

 

Cure JM is moving up in  The Pepsi Challenge:  13th place and moving!

As you know, JM (Juvenile Myositis) is an orphan disease, less then 17,000 kids in the country have it and anything with less than 200,000 cases is considered an orphan disease.  In Kyra's case, she has JDM which is a sub-category of JM, which means even fewer kids have what Kyra has.  Securing funding for research for such orphan diseases is virtually impossible if not for friends who gereously give.  This grant which Pepsi is "putting up for grabs" is a treasure for anyone who can get it.  Please help by casting your vote for Cure JM, everyday till the end of the month.  You can only vote once, but again anyone 13 and older in your household can vote.  Click here to get you started on helping a tremendous cause and help Make Myositis a Memory!

 

Kyra's Dream Comes True...

After a busy 2 days of Disneyland and California Adventure Park, we are so happy to be home.  We rode so many rides, saw the fireworks and parades, and closed down the parks on both nights.  It was awesome!  Kyra drove at the Autopia, rode Dumbo the Flying Elephant, and sang "It's a Small World" just for starters.  It was such a blessing to see her so happy.  We are so thankful to everyone for such an amazing and generous gift.  See all of the pictures from the Magic Kingdom by clicking on the "Photo" icon.  (Updated on 5/2/2010).

 

Health Care Reform Interview

On the eve of the signing of the Health Care Reform Bill, Mari-Ela David of Hawaii News Now sat down with us to discuss how this bill could help kids with pre-exsisting medical conditions like Kyra.  Click on the "VIDEO" tab to view this interview I call "Hope with Help".  (Updated on 3/30/2010) 

[Photo of Darin and Mari-Ela of Hawaii News Now with Kyra]

Kyra in the news...a look back

Although the video sources are no longer available on the internet, watch the interviews that brought Kyra's story into your home on KHNL.  Go to the "VIDEOS" tab and check it out. (Update 3/6/2010)

Kyra's Sacrifice...The Meaning of Lent

When Kyra was asked what she would give up for Lent she took a moment to think about it.  Then she said," It has to be something that I love, right?  Ok, I will give up learning...I won't do any homework until Easter because I love it so much!"  We came to an agreement and she will continue to learn and do homework, but until Easter she has given up M&M's.  What a cute girl.  (Updated 3/6/2010)

Disneyland...here we come! 

The final approval has been given by Kyra's doctors to visit the Magic Kingdom.  We will be leaving for our Disney adventure on April 28 and returning on May 1.  Check back to view all of the pictures and tune in to the morning show with Perry and Price on KSSK on April 29 and 30th  as we will try and contact them live from the Magic Kingdom when Kyra visits with Cinderella and her friends.  (updated on 3/6/2010)

***NEW*** Kyra goes back to school

Kyra started her first day of Kindergarten at Our Savior Lutheran School on January 4, 2010.  Congratulations Kyra!  She has come such a long way.

 

***NEW*** Christmas with the Aloha 5-0 Line Dancing Club

Read the latest blog about the Christmas party we had with the Aloha 5-0 Line Dancing Club and view the photos in the "Photo Gallery".  (Updated on 1/5/2010)

***NEW***  Dolphin Adventure

Check out the latest pictures of Kyra's Dolphin Adventure at Sea Life Park in the "Photo" section and "Blog".  (Posted 1/04/2010)

***NEW***  Read the latest blog about Kyra, Sierra and Mom riding in the Kapolei Christmas Light Parade (posted 12/13/2009)

Kyra, Mom and Sierra ride aboard the Target Sleigh in the Kapolei Light Parade on Saturday Night.

***NEW***  Kyra was selected to partcipate in a pilot program with the Rehab Department of Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children.  She will be going to the Dolphin Adventure at Sea Life Park on Thursday December 17, 2009.  Look for pictures of this exciting encounter.  (updated 12/13/2009)

***NEW***  Read the latest blogs about responses from our Congressional leaders in Washington over health care reform and Kyra's special drawing gets a lot of attention at Kapiolani Hospital.  (updated 12/8/2009)

Two Special Girls     (posted on 11/18/2009)

On Sunday November 8, 2009 Kyra had a special lunch with Jamie and her family at Anna Millers in Pearl Ridge.  Jamie is a little girl that like Kyra suffers from Juvenile Dermatomyositis.  It was very touching to see these two brave little souls laugh and enjoy each others company.  To learn more about Jamie, view her website here.

***NEW***  Read the latest blog about Kyra being denied therapy (10/16/2009)

Kyra gets denied by HMSA of any medical insurance coverage with her therapy.

The Furukawa's Are Going To Disneyland!

The KSSK Radio team invited Kyra and family to the Saturday Morning Show at Jimmy Buffett's to surprise them with a trip to Disneyland.  See the latest blog and video.  A very big "MAHALO" to Michael W. Perry, Larry Price, Sweetie Pacarro, Christine Yasuma, Kathy "With A K" and the entire KSSK Team for all of their support with Kyra's special story.  A very special "Thank You" to videojournalist Ed Matthews and Mari-Ela David as well as the entire KHNL News 8 team for taking the time to share Kyra's courageous story with the world.

Kyra's story goes global (updated on 9/23/2009)

To our family and friends in Switzerland, you can now view this website in either French or Italian by simply going to the bottom of this page and clicking on the translator button. 

The Offical Hero of the Month Award for September 2009

A brave little fighter

Gary was only 2 years old when he was diagnosed with Juvenile Dermatomyositis back in May 2009.  View his story here as he courageously battles this terrible disease.

Counted Blessings

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Our Thank You Box

Many thanks to the following angels:

God

Grandma Betty

Grandma LaVerne

Grandpa Bob and Grandmama

Uncle David and Aunty Sheila

Uncle Joe and Aunty Yuri

Uncle Oliver and Aunty Lily

Aunty Glenda, Aunty Faith and Uncle Tim

Mr. Evensen and the entire OSLS family

Dr. Ching, Dr. Fujimoto, Dr. Kitamura and the entire staff

Aunty Doreen

Uncle Jon and the entire Kapolei Target Ohana

Dr. Chang and the entire P.C. Medical team

Dr. Yamamoto and the entire KMCWC staff

Deborah, Kat, Jamie, Patty, KImie, Kelly, Tucker and the entire Rehab ohana

Stacey Acma and the Children's Miracle Network

Our secret Santa of Friends of Kyra Furukawa Fund (much mahalo for such a generous gift)

All of our family at the Aloha 5-0 Line Dancing Club (a special mahalo to Pat & Mieko)

The team at KSSK (Mahalo Uncle Mike, Uncle Larry, Aunty Sweetie, Aunty Kathy and Aunty Christine)

The team of former KHNL (Aunty Mari-Ela and Uncle Ed) for bringing my story to the world

Aunty Robin, Aunty Abby, Aunty Naomi, Aunty Raelene, Uncle Paul and Uncle Rob

The HNL TSA 678 ohana

Uncle Dan

To all the members of Hearts 4 Kyra for all of your continued support

To all our family and friends for all of your thoughts and prayers...Mahalo

 

A Blessing For Today

I dreamt that I went to Heaven and an angel was showing me around. We walked side-by-side inside a large workroom filled with angels. My angel guide stopped in front of the first section and said, 'This is the Receiving Section. Here, all petitions to God said in prayer are received. '

I looked around in this area, and it was terribly busy with so many angels sorting out petitions written on voluminous paper sheets and scraps from people all over the world.

Then we moved on down a long corridor until we reached the second section.

The angel then said to me, "This is the Packaging and Delivery Section. Here, the graces and blessings the people asked for are processed and delivered to the living persons who asked for them." I noticed again how busy it was there. There were many angels working hard at that station, since so many blessings had been requested and were being packaged for delivery to Earth.

Finally at the farthest end of the long corridor we stopped at the door of a very small station. To my great surprise, only one angel was seated there, idly doing nothing. "This is the Acknowledgment Section, my angel friend quietly admitted to me. He seemed embarrassed." How is it that there is no work going on here?' I asked.

"So sad," the angel sighed. "After people receive the blessings that they asked for, very few send back acknowledgments"

"How does one acknowledge God's blessings?" I asked..

"Simple," the angel answered. Just say, "Thank you, Lord. "

"What blessings should they acknowledge?" I asked.

"If you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof overhead and a place to sleep you are richer than 75% of this world. If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in a dish, you are among the top 8% of the world's wealthy."

"And if you get this on your own computer, you are part of the 1% in the world who has that opportunity."

"If you woke up this morning with more health than illness ... You are more blessed than the many who will not even survive this day."

"If you have never experienced the fear in battle, the loneliness of imprisonment, the agony of torture, or the pangs of starvation ... You are ahead of 700 million people in the world."

"If you can attend a church without the fear of harassment, arrest, torture or death you are envied by, and more blessed than, three billion people in the world."  

"If your parents are still alive and still married ..you are very rare."

"If you can hold your head up and smile, you are not the norm, you're unique to all those in doubt and despair......."

Ok, what now? How can I start?

If you can read this message, you just received a double blessing in that someone was thinking of you as very special and you are more blessed than over two billion people in the world who cannot read at all.

Have a good day, count your blessings , and if you care to, pass this along to remind everyone else how blessed we all are.

ATTN: Acknowledgement Dept .

"Thank you Lord, for giving me the ability to share this message and for giving me so many wonderful people with whom to share it."

If you have read this far, and are thankful for all that you have been blessed with, how can you not send it on???? I thank God for everything, especially all my family and friends!!