Leland Snyder – 2023 Recipient

Leland is a bright 11 year old who just started 6th grade at Grantsburg Middle School. Leland is active in band (playing percussion instruments)/ and Boy Scouts. Last winter Leland found he enjoyed wrestling and has played baseball the last few summers as well.

At 7 weeks old Leland became jaundice, which was dismissed as breastfeeding jaundice. At around 9 weeks Leland was seen and they tested his bilirubin which was quite high for his age, this was a Thursday night. Due to his labs being so high he was seen again Monday morning at Children’s Hospital. Leland had lab work, an ultrasound and a HIDA scan. These tests revealed he had a blockage in his bile duct and would need an exploratory surgery to see if the blockage could be removed. The surgery found that his bile duct was malformed and would need to be removed – the first time his parents heard the words Biliary Atresia. Leland had a procedure called a Kasai done which removed his bile duct and connected his liver to his small intestine. Leland was in and out of the hospital until age 2.

Due to how Leland’s liver and small intestine is connected, Leland is at high risk of liver infections, portal hypertension, and many illness that a normal body can fight off. Leland will one day need a liver transplant due to his Biliary Atresia. Leland is currently stable with his liver function but even a small illness could send him to the hospital for a stay; each illness can affect his liver.

Leland is the youngest of three children and the only boy in the family. Leland was introduced to hunting from friends at school, but a family friend has been the one to encourage and support Leland in the woods.

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