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More Knowledge, More Miracles


Not Just a Number

In October 2020, Maria Young — an active 41-year-old woman — arrived at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, with COVID-19 and double pneumonia. A staggering 130 days later, Maria returned to her family. At the hospital, she spent 69 days on ECMO (Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation, a form of life support) and 70 days on a ventilator. Maria was lucky to be at a hospital with advanced technologies and experienced doctors. The mission of Maria’s Miracle is to help others around the U.S. and world receive the same level of care by supporting advanced critical care and ECMO training programs. Maria’s Miracle also aims to distribute accurate information about COVID-19 and to support families with loved ones facing extended ICU stays and ECMO support.

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What We Do
(or are working on)

Critical Care Medicine Training
(Coming Soon)

Provide an annual advanced training fellowship in critical care for a doctor through Johns Hopkins Medicine

What we do

Survivor Spotlight


Rhonda Sawyer “Sassy” was an active loving mother and grandma who enjoyed spending time with her family including her son, three daughters and their growing families. In the fall of 2021, Rhonda contracted COVID-19 and continued to decline. She was placed on VV ECMO at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, FL. After over 80 days completely sedated, doctors were able to wake her up while still on ECMO so she could begin physical therapy and be evaluated for a double lung transplant (they thought she’d need a kidney too, but hers healed with time!). After 153 days on ECMO, Sassy received new lungs thanks to a generous donor. Her family was with her the entire way and she got to meet her newest grandbaby while still in the hospital. Her daughters made sure she felt more like herself by brushing her hair and painting her nails. 

Rhonda Sawyer

Double lung transplant recipient


The family motto during her illness was “Sassy Strong” and the hospital even nicknamed her ECMO machine “Sassy” when she left the unit. Her medical team even took the time to figure out ways to get her outside to see the sunshine while she was connected to lot of machines. After 7 months, Sassy returned home to her family and is learning to live life with new lungs.

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