The University of Iowa
The University of Iowa News Services Home News Releases UI in the News Subscribe to UI News Contact Us

University of Iowa News Release

March 16, 2005

Dubuque Boy Is Children's Miracle Network 'Champion'

A Dubuque boy who represents all Iowa children who have faced serious medical challenges leaves today to participate in the Children's Miracle Network "2005 Foresters Champions Across America" program.

Alex Clark, 11, injured his leg while sledding in the winter of 2002. X-rays showed an abnormality on his femur -- the large bone in the thigh. Tests at Children's Hospital of Iowa in University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City diagnosed the problem as osteosarcoma, or cancer of the bone.

Joseph Buckwalter, M.D., professor and head of the Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, performed a delicate bone graft, replacing the cancerous portion of Alex's leg with donated bone. Alex then received six months of intense chemotherapy and eventually made a full recovery.

Alex and his parents will join 49 other Champions -- one from each state -- today in Washington, D.C. The children will serve as ambassadors for 14 million of their hospitalized peers. The children, their families and supporters will attend a special reception at the White House.

"The incredible courage and determination of these kids inspires us all," said actor John Schneider, who co-founded Children's Miracle Network with entertainer Marie Osmond. "They really are champions, every one of them, and they deserved to be honored."

Following their stay in the nation's capital, the Champions will travel to Orlando, Fla., where they will participate in videotaping the 2005 CMN telethon at Walt Disney World, which will be broadcast nationwide on the weekend of June 4-5, 2005. They will also participate in national media events, radio interviews and a satellite media tour. The Champions will also attend a special awards ceremony and a private concert with Lonestar.

The Independent Order of Foresters (IOF), an international fraternal benefit society, sponsors the Champions Across America program. IOF has proudly supported Children's Miracle Network since 1990.

Headquartered in Salt Lake City, Utah, Children's Miracle Network is an international non-profit organization dedicated to generating funds and awareness programs to benefit children treated at 170 children's hospitals throughout the United States and Canada. Children's Miracle Network's hallmark is that locally generated donations stay in the local area to benefit patients at the local children's hospital. To date, Children's Miracle Network has raised more than $2.6 billion for children's hospitals. Children's Miracle Network also includes 75 corporate sponsors, 200 television stations and more than 135 radio stations.

Children's Hospital of Iowa at UI Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City is the state's longest-serving children's hospital. More than 130,000 children receive care at the Children's Hospital of Iowa and its statewide network of outreach clinics each year.

For assistance in covering this event, please contact Michelle Altmaier, at 319-335-9003.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine and UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide. Visit UI Health Care online at

STORY SOURCE: Joint Office for Marketing and Communications, University of Iowa Health Care, 200 Hawkins Drive, Room E110 GH, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1009

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Moore, 319-356-3945,