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Our Story

Meet Jude! Isn't he adorable? Jude is the son of Nicole and Josef Ward and little brother to Josiah. He loves watching Nemo and Mother Goose Club. His big bro is his favorite person in the whole world. He has the kindest soul despite his daily struggles. Jude could have just fasted for 12 + hours and the second he gets food he is offering you some too. He may be feeling bad but he will never tell you what hurts, he is so strong. He is our little big hero. ♥ 

Jude has not had an easy path.  At 4 weeks old he suffered a brain bleed due to vitamin k deficiency.  He had a craniotomy and miraculously recovered very well.  His liver was the last organ to catch up.  After months of monitoring, Jude was diagnosed with Alpha 1 Antitrypsin Deficiency.  Just this past December (2016) did his family realize how serious this was going to affect his life.  The doctors at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Florida, have recommended a life-saving liver transplant. Friends, family and volunteers from Coral Springs and the surrounding areas are working diligently to reach their goal of raising $75,000 for COTA in honor of Jude, to assist with transplant related expenses.

With the cost of a transplant often exceeding $500,000, many transplant families are unable to shoulder the financial burden of such a procedure. The Children’s Organ Transplant Association (COTA) is a national charity dedicated to organizing and guiding communities in raising funds for transplant-related expenses. Local volunteers are raising funds for COTA in honor of transplant patients like our little warrior, Jude Ward. The Ward family needs us. They need our help, our hope and our prayers. We hope you will join in and be apart of our efforts.


  • The COTA Staff

    We are happy to be working with you!

  • Melissa

    Looking forward to much success!

  • Sharen Choate

    Sweet Jude, I pray your match is found soon!

  • Rick Lofgren, COTA President

    Greetings from COTA! I want to congratulate the COTA for Jude W volunteer team for a great effort raising funds for the campaign in honor of Jude! When I set the campaign fundraising goals with all of our families, I try to do so knowing that some communities and volunteer teams have more developed resources and connections than others, and in fundraising these are critical to success. With this in mind, I usually suggest a goal to COTA patients that I believe is needed for any patient’s long-term expenses and transplant-related costs, and the goal generally reflects the next four to five years of out-of-pocket costs. For example, most of our patients will have $5,000 in annual co-payments, deductibles, and medications, as well as another $5,000 or more of additional costs for clinic visits. This could mean $25,000 - $50,000 for these costs alone for any patient in two or three years after transplant. In this case, because your team and supporters have done such a great job leading up to the volunteer meeting, and with Jude’s ongoing care as he awaits transplant in Philadelphia, I spoke with Nicole this week and suggested that we amend the goal to better reflect the long-term expenses. Because of this, I have raised the goal for the COTA for Jude W campaign from $50,000 to $75,000 to reflect what I believe will be actual costs going forward for the next several years. Thank you for all the work and support you have provided to this point, and please keep the entire Ward family in your prayers as Jude continues along his transplant journey!

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