John’s Story

John and Spidey recover from open-heart surgery

“Our son John was a foster child and terrified of white coats when we first met Dr. Janine Arruda. Sensing his anxiety, she stood in the doorway and talked to us from there. We took John to see her once a week, and each visit she moved a little bit closer to him. He was learning to trust her, and the caring clinic staff. At their fourth interaction, he finally allowed her to examine him.

Spider-Man keeps patient John company

“That was five years ago. Today, John and Dr. Arruda are best buds! She calls him ‘her little friend’ and he calls her ‘Dr. Ruda Roo’.

“John has a severe congenital heart disease, requiring four open-heart surgeries. Every hospitalization his favorite Spider-Man would accompany him. When he awoke in recovery after his most recent procedure, John was surprised and pleased to find Spider-Man looked just like he had!” – Terry Peterson, John’s adoptive mom