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Ludvik family counts number of shoes collected

The Ludvik family counts the number of shoes collected in the Shoes for Miles drive.

The fifth annual Shoes for Miles collected more than 400 pairs of new kids’ shoes for some of Nebraska’s most vulnerable children while raising awareness of congenital heart defects (CHDs).

The shoes donated will benefit the Foster CARE Closet of Nebraska, a nonprofit that gives new, donated clothing to abused and neglected children in foster care in Lincoln, Omaha, North Platte, Scottsbluff and surrounding areas.

The Lincoln community donated shoes in February to support the campaign to honor the fifth birthday of Miles Ludvik, infant son of Greg and Dana Ludvik of Lincoln. Miles was born Feb. 14, 2014, and died six days later due to complications related to complex CHDs.

Shoes for Miles gives the Ludvik family an opportunity to shed light on CHDs, the world’s most common birth defect.

“Nearly one of every 110 babies is born with a heart defect, and more awareness and research is needed to improve early detection and outcomes for those living with them,” said Dana Ludvik.

"Through the community’s generous support, we were able to collect and donate 425 pairs of new, high-quality shoes to the Foster CARE Closet,” she added. “It is rewarding to help provide such an essential item to kids and families in need — and to celebrate our son’s life in this way.”

Participating organizations included Footloose & Fancy/THREADS, UNL Ruth Staples Child Development Lab, Target, ALLO Communications, NRC Health, Neogen and Lincoln Children's Museum.

The campaign coincided with American Heart Month, Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Week and Miles' birthday. Learn more at shoesformiles.org and on Facebook at facebook.com/shoesformiles.

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L Magazine editor

Mark Schwaninger is L magazine and Neighborhood Extra editor.

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