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Hope is powerful. This holiday season, we invite you to make a gift that gives hope to our patients and spreads joy to our hospital staff.

Because your generosity and holiday cheer encourage those like Danny Via.

Two years ago, Danny joined his wife, Kristie, for lunch when he realized his heart was racing. His family had no history of heart problems, so he had no clue he was dealing with an aortic aneurysm.

Danny Via (left), grateful patient, sits next to his wife, Kristie (right), on a metal bench at Wilmot Botanical Gardens. Danny wears a blue dress shirt and cargo shorts while Kristie wears a white long-sleeved shirt.
Danny Via (left), grateful patient, and Kristie Via (right) sit on a bench in Wilmot Botanical Gardens.

Thankfully, UF Health and Tomas D. Martin, M.D., director of the UF Health Aortic Disease Center, were there. Martin and his team removed the aneurysm and inserted a graft and a bovine replacement valve. This surgery was the first of several for Danny at UF Health.

While on a hunting trip in 2021, Danny developed a staph infection that led to sepsis. Martin and UF Health provided care once more, which included Danny undergoing two more procedures and spending five weeks in the ICU.

“I thank the good Lord for placing talented, compassionate providers like Dr. Martin and the UF Health team in my life,” Via said. “Their care is second to none, and each physician gave me hope during my recovery.”

Moving stories, like Danny’s, are why we encourage you to make a gift and write a message to our patients and hospital staff. Your gift helps make innovative, patient-centered treatment possible while your note lifts spirits throughout the holiday season.

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