August 31, 2010 13:18 ET

Winning family gives back to Sunnybrook's Women & Babies Program

Attention: Assignment Editor, Health/Medical Editor, Media Editor, News Editor, Photo Editor TORONTO, ONTARIO, MEDIA ADVISORY--(Marketwire - Aug. 31, 2010) - When Devlin De Francesco was born at Sunnybrook, he weighed just enough to rest in the palm of his mother's hand - one pound.

Ten years and 70 pounds later, Devlin and his parents, Andrew and Cathy, have gifted a very generous $2.5 million to Sunnybrook's new Women & Babies Program facility. The state-of-the-art facility, featuring the country's most advanced maternity ward, will welcome its first new patients on September 12, 2010.

"We are deeply grateful for the treatment that Devlin received at Sunnybrook," says Andrew De Francesco. "We are delighted to give back to this group of dedicated staff so that they can continue to help more families who need them."

Devlin spent the first four months of his life in an incubator. Under the expert care of Sunnybrook staff, including Dr. Elizabeth Asztalos who performed an emergency procedure on his lung, Devlin survived and has grown into a thriving, active child.

Today, there is no challenge too big for the boy who came into the world so small. One of the top Micro-Max drivers in North America, Devlin is the winner of the 2009 Canadian National Karting Championship.

When the De Francesco family recently toured the new Women & Babies program spaces at Sunnybrook's Bayview campus, Cathy was overcome by emotion.

"We hope that our gift will give more families the kind of leading-edge care and assurance that we had," she says. "We are especially grateful to Dr. Asztalos - she saved Devlin's life."

Devlin's siblings Lachlan, Ava and Summer were also born at Sunnybrook.

About Sunnybrook's Women & Babies Program
From fertility, pregnancy and birth to mature women's health, Sunnybrook's Women & Babies Program is a world leader in teaching, patient care and scientific discovery. Specializing in high-risk pregnancy and critically premature babies, we deliver one in five babies weighing less than three pounds in Ontario.

Contact Information

  • Communications & Stakeholder Relations, Sunnybrook Foundation
    Primary Phone: 416-480-4040