By the time she turned 17 years old, Courtney Moss already had undergone 25 surgeries. After noticing fatigue and a cough in their daughter following her 26th surgery, Debi and Scott Moss took her to the emergency room, only to find out she had heart failure.
“You would think after all we had been through, that we would be prepared for anything,” Scott Moss said. “I can honestly say it floored me.”
This was not the first time Courtney had gone through heart failure.
“She had her first open-heart surgery at a year-and-a-half-old,” Moss said. “Not quite a year later, she had heart failure. It was a mysterious kind of thing. They blamed it on a virus attacking her heart. She was actually slated then to have a heart transplant, but all of a sudden, her heart, being so young and strong, healed itself.”
Despite the family praying and hoping for the same result the second time around, Courtney’s heart did not heal itself and a battery-powered heart pump was installed, Moss said.
The pump is not a permanent solution, Moss said, so Courtney will be placed on the heart transplant list when her heart is strong enough.
Luckily the family’s insurance will cover the transplant, but there is another issue, Debi Moss said.
“We have insurance, but as far as her rejection medicines, that is what will be the major cost after the heart is placed and she lives for the rest of her life,” Moss said. “She will constantly be on rejection medicines. That is one of the main costs that gets very expensive.”
That is why The Church on the Rise at 3520 Bishop Road is sponsoring a benefit spaghetti dinner and concert Saturday night.
“I think Courtney is a special girl,” said the Rev. Jason Cockrell, associate pastor at Church on the Rise. “She’s such a sweet girl, and they are a sweet family.”
The idea for the fundraiser came after Cockrell heard about Courtney’s condition and spoke with Eric Ghiloni, both of whom were good friends with Scott Moss in high school, Cockrell said.
For Scott Moss, the idea that so many people want to help is incredible, he said.
“It overwhelming,” Moss said. “It is amazing how people are pulling together.”
The spaghetti dinner is $6 a plate and runs from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. The concert is $10 and begins after the dinner.
The concert will feature musicians including Brandi Love, Travis Moss and the Englewood Baptist worship team. Courtney Moss said she is excited about the concert, but she is ready for the heart transplant.
“It is difficult,” Moss said. “I do not like this bag (she carries containing the battery for her heart pump) because it weighs too much. I am actually ready to get it done.
“I am excited about the concert and being at it and seeing everyone that wants to help out.”
Cockrell said the church is expecting about 500 people to attend the event.
More information about the event can be found by calling 972-7473.