Edmond 8-year-old's mission dear to her heart

Ella Turner, 8, has been jumping rope for children with bad hearts for three years. She works to raise money in honor of her 2-year-old sister, Colby, who died from a rare disease that affected her heart.
by Diana Baldwin Modified: February 4, 2013 at 8:27 pm •  Published: February 5, 2013
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— Ella Turner was a kindergartner three years ago when she started her mission to help children with bad hearts.

Her cause is dear to her heart because she does it in honor of her little sister, Colby, who died when she was 2.

Colby died of complications from a rare disease, geleophysic dysplasia, which affected her heart.

Ella, 8, is an ambassador for the American Heart Association.

When she was 5, she learned at her Texas school about Jump Rope for Heart, an American Heart Association program that raises money for heart disease. She had raised $16,500 by the time she moved to Edmond to start the spring semester at Centennial Elementary School.

Her biggest challenge yet — start at a new school and find 1,000 donors for this year's Jump Rope for Heart.

“My heart feels good when I do it because I feel like I'm doing something for other people,” said the red-haired girl with a big smile.

Ella learned about Jump Rope for Heart in her physical education class in Rockwall, Texas. She knew immediately that is what she wanted to do for Colby.

“I came running out of school,” Ella said. “I was so excited. I told my dad I wanted to raise $1,000. He told me I didn't understand how much $1,000 is.”

Ella told her dad he didn't understand how much it would help kids like Colby.

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by Diana Baldwin
Sr. Reporter
Diana Baldwin has been an Oklahoma journalist since 1976 and came to The Oklahoman in 1991. She covered the Oklahoma City bombing and covered the downfall of Oklahoma City police forensic chemist Joyce Gilchrist misidentifying evidence. She wrote...
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How to help

To donate, go to www.ellajumps.com.

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