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Utah girl who fell from slide still fighting for life

Published May 10, 2013 6:50 am

Accident • Tumor on heart — a "ticking time bomb" — caused KayLee Cox to collapse.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

A 3-year-old girl who was flown to a hospital after falling from her backyard slide last week is still fighting for her life after an unusual tumor caused her to go into cardiac arrest.

The circumstances surrounding KayLee Cox's condition were initially unknown, but after receiving an echocardiogram at Primary Children's Medical Center, KayLee's parents learned that a tumor in her heart's left ventricle caused the girl to have a heart attack while she was playing outside with her dog at the family's home in West Valley City on May 2.

The fall from the slide was not what caused KayLee to lose consciousness, said Casey Walker, a close friend of the Cox family.

Doctors described the tumor as a "ticking time bomb" that would have affected KayLee's heart eventually, Walker said in an interview Thursday.

KayLee is still unconscious and in critical condition at Primary Children's, Walker said. KayLee's mother, who was watching the girl play from inside, performed CPR and likely saved her life, he said. Since then KayLee's condition has stabilized, but the prognosis is still uncertain.

"It's just a matter of keeping her stable right now," Walker said.

The experience has been "tough" on the girl's parents, he added, both emotionally and financially.

"They're doing the best they can," Walker said.

The Coxes have incurred costly medical expenses, almost $100,000, and friends have set up a fund at America First Credit Union under the name KayLee Cox. A Facebook page, "Pray for KayLee," was also created.

kbennion@sltrib.com

Twitter: @KimballBennion To donate

I An account under the name of KayLee Cox has been set up at America First Credit Union. You can donate money to help the Cox family with medical expenses at any branch. The account number is 9059577.