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West Point coach’s daughter Emma inspires MSU to raise awareness for children’s hospital

January 26, 2013

Mississippi State University and Blair E. Batson Children Hospital have partnered together to raise money and awareness for the only children’s hospital in the state of Mississippi.
Spearheaded by the Mississippi State Student Association and Co-Director of Late Night Events Brett Harris, the “On Your Mark, Get Set, GLOW 5k Run” is set for February 7 and will start at 7 o’clock at night on Mississippi State’s Starkville campus. The run will feature local Golden Triangle Area disc jockeys positioned along the three-mile route and has already created an enormous buzz around campus.
The 5k Run will spotlight local Batson patient Emma Welch, the two year-old daughter of West Point High School’s assistant football and powerlifting coach Casey Welch. Emma faces a genetic metabolic disorder causing a major build-up of lactic acid in her body that could have become life-threatening, but thanks to the great staff at Batson Children’s Hospital in Jackson the crisis was averted. Coach Casey spoke highly of the staff at the hospital Friday afternoon and explained why he feels obligated to support Blair E. Batson.
“The reason we do so much for the hospital is because my wife, Martha Ann, and I feel obligated to Blair E. Batson,” commented Coach Welch, “they were able to diagnose quickly and created a treatment plan that saved our daughter’s life.”
Emma still makes visits to the Batson every six months for check-ups but without the care she has received from the doctors at the hospital Martha Ann and Casey’s lives would be very different without a happy young daughter.
“The hospital has a health plan for Emma, from dietary to medicine, they are helping her develop into a healthy little girl,” said Coach Welch about the continued help from the Batson Children’s Hospital.
Casey Welch not only has ties to the West Point athletic department as a coach, but also to Mississippi State where he was a walk-on football player from 2003 to 2004. Welch graduated from MSU in 2006 and joined the West Point School District the following fall.
The event organizers have already generated over a thousand dollars in revenue from local sponsors and hopes to continue to raise money for Batson. All money raised for the run is going directly to Blair E. Batson Children’s Hospital.
“It is an awesome cause,” said Coach Welch about the “On Your Mark, Get Set, GLOW 5k Run” raising money for Batson, “it is also good publicity for Blair E. Batson which is not as widely known in this area of the state.”
If you would like to register for the “On Your Mark, Get Set, GLOW 5k Run” on Thursday February 7 you can visit sa.msstate.edu and sign up for twenty dollars. Participants will receive a glow stick and t-shirt.    

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