Back to Blog

The mighty Ellie: A Mary Bridge Children’s superhero

Ellie has been a patient at Mary Bridge since she was 6 months old.


By Laura McDonald

Ellie Carter was born fighting.

Her mom, Megan Carter, went into labor just 20 weeks into her pregnancy. Fortunately, Ellie didn’t arrive for another few weeks. When she did, her doctors said she was too small to resuscitate — until she started kicking the neonatologist.

“She was brave right from that moment and has continued to be the bravest person I’ve ever known,” Carter says.

Ellie has been a patient at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital since she was 6 months old. Now at age 4, she visits Mary Bridge 200 out of 365 days per year to receive care for several medical conditions. Ellie gets four pokes per day; 1,460 pokes every year.

During one recent visit to Mary Bridge, she was surprised by her very own real-life superhero: Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman.

Ellie’s providers at Mary Bridge include numerous people who all work together to provide Ellie with the care she needs, including donors in the community who make it possible for her to access programs such as:

  • Pediatric Complex Care support team: A team that coordinates all of Ellie’s care and treatment and provides support to Ellie’s family.
  • Child Life Services team: Specialists who care for Ellie’s social and emotional welfare through play and fun distractions.
  • Mary Bridge Good Samaritan Children’s Therapy Unit: A center for children with special needs where Ellie receives orthotics (special shoes) and therapies.
  • Family-centered intensive care: When Ellie needs to stay overnight at Mary Bridge, her mom or dad can sleep by her side.
  • Financial assistance: Mary Bridge cares for all children, regardless of ability to pay.

Team Ellie also does everything they can to make sure her family has the support they need to be strong for Ellie.

“We spend a lot of time with our patients, a lot of time getting to know their brothers and sisters and their parents and their grandparents,” says Kristen Bishop, Ellie’s Child Life Specialist. “It’s pretty amazing that we can care for the entire family.”

Ellie’s dad, Andy, says they’re grateful for all Mary Bridge has done to help make Ellie’s quality of the life the best it can possibly be.

See Ellie's visit with Richard Sherman

Donate to Mary Bridge