Portland, OR. The evening began with a standing ovation and ended with a remarkable outpouring of generosity as a record-setting $631,000 was raised for the Providence Child Center and Center for Medically Fragile Children. Heart of Gold emcee Bill Schonely took time for a photo with Pat Moss, Jim Moss, Tina Gauthier and Tim Gauthier at the February 15th gala.

Since 1992, the Heart of Gold award has honored members of the community for their unwavering support for the young people at the Center for Medically Fragile Children. Past recipients include sports broadcaster Bill Schonely, real estate developer Joe Weston, civic leader Gerry Frank and well-known physician Don Romanaggi, M.D. 

Carrie Petz, whose 15-year-old son Joel has lived at the center since age 3, delivered an emotional speech during the evening. “The child center has been our second home and we are so very grateful for the care Joel receives from the staff,” said Petz, noting the important role the center has played in her family.

Kyle Petz, center, and his parents, Nate and Carrie Petz gave emotional remarks at the event. Kyle’s twin brother, Joel Petz, is a resident at the Center for Medically Fragile Children.

Nate and Carrie Petz with sons Kyle and Joel.

For the finale, the “Heart of Gold” award was given to the 125 caregivers at the Center for Medically Fragile Children. These exceptional individuals bring their compassion, kindness, dedication and expertise to some of the most vulnerable young people in our community.

Providence Center for Medically Fragile Children’s 125 caregivers were honored this year for the compassion, kindness, dedication and expertise they bring to some of the most vulnerable children in our community.

“Once you spend time with these children, you are changed,” said Angela Shields, RN, as she accepted the honor surrounded by her fellow caregivers. “These kids teach us so much about life, patience and love.” 

Past honorees gather for the 25th and final year of the Heart of Gold award celebration.

Providence Child Center board member Blake Howells, past Heart of Gold honoree Don Romanaggi, M.D., Dotty Schonely and Liz Howells

Past honoree and sports broadcaster Bill Schonely was the master of ceremonies at this year’s Heart of Gold event.

The Center for Medically Fragile Children is the only pediatric nursing facility of its kind in the Pacific Northwest that cares for children with profound disabilities and complex medical needs. The $631,000 raised at this year’s Heart of Gold finale will help endow the center to ensure that the young residents continue to receive the latest treatments, therapies and care inspired by this year’s honorees.

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The Providence Child Center provides services for children of all abilities to help them reach their full potential and includes the Center for Medically Fragile Children, the only facility in the Northwest offering skilled-nursing care for children with profound disabilities and complex medical needs; Providence Children’s Development Institute; Swindells Resource Center for children and families; and Providence Wee Care. For more information, visit www.providence.org/childcenter.

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