Jase Krantz left the fourth grade at Banning Lewis Elementary School on Tuesday afternoon, stepped into a Porsche Cayenne, and took a short ride to the place of her birth – Memorial Hospital North.
When she walked into the hospital, dozens of Memorial employees began singing happy birthday to the girl who was the first to be born when MHN opened its doors on April 25, 2007.
Since that blissful day, Jase has grown into a gem of a young lady. She gets straight As in school, loves activities and plays hockey for the Colorado Rampage; she’s one of only few girls on the team.
“When she was about 2 years old, she saw hockey on television and said she wanted to do that. I thought she wanted to go ice skating, so when she was about 4, I took her ice skating and she said no, so I put her in hockey,’’ said Jon Krantz, Jase’s dad.
The Colorado Avalanche, Colorado College Hockey and USA Hockey provided Jase with very cool memorabilia. Colorado College sent three hockey players to wish Jase a happy birthday. Porsche of Colorado Springs provided the transportation in the Porsche.
There were hats and jerseys from Colorado College, USA Hockey and a signed jersey and hockey stick from Nathan MacKinnon, a forward for the Avalanche.
Asked what she liked best, Jase replied: “I don’t know, like, all of it.’’
She anticipated she might have to keep the MacKinnon shirt away from her big sister, Boe, 13, born at Memorial Hospital Central.
“She is not wearing that,’’ Jase told her mother, Nicole Andreas.
Dr. Jack Tubbs, a prominent OB/Gyn who has delivered between 200 and 300 babies a year for 25 years, remembers the day MHN opened.
“I remember worrying about whether or not it was going to open that day or if we were going to have to deliver at MHC. Everything went great,’’ he said.
When he saw Jase on Tuesday, he said he was pleased to see such a happy, healthy girl.
“A lot of times people will come up to me with their children and say, ‘You delivered this one.’’ And it is always great to see that they are happy and healthy and given lots of opportunities in life,’’ Dr. Tubbs said.
Since Jase was born, 17,000 children have been born at the hospital that began as a small, neighborhood hospital to one that has grown to providing advanced cardiac, cancer, and oncology care.
Tamera Dunseth-Rosenbaum, the associate chief nursing officer at MHN, told the crowd at the birthday party that a look outside – where construction is underway on a $125 million, 144,000-square foot addition to see how the hospital has evolved in the last 10 years.
The addition brings eight additional emergency department beds, a new CT scan (giving the hospital two), two new operating rooms and expanded oncology services in a convenient, one-stop location.
The labor and delivery unit will be connected by a walking bridge to a new Children’s Hospital Colorado hospital that also is under construction on the MHN campus.
What will the next 10 years bring for MHN?
“I think we’re going to have more providers on this campus, we’ll have more surgeons, cardiologists and oncologists. With Children’s here, this campus will be a convenient, one-stop campus for parents, families, and children,’’ Dunseth-Rosenbaum said.
She said that seeing how healthy Jase is on her 10th birthday is “what it’s all about.’’
Before the party ended, Jase’s family joked that they’d like to celebrate her 20th birthday at MHN – and drive away in a new Porsche.