Eliana Clem Ballston Spa Heart Princess

Local Girl Throws Out First Pitch

TROY – A local girl born who has had to overcome multiple heart defects threw out the first pitch at a Tri-City Valley Cats game this week.

Eliana Clem Ballston Spa Heart Princess

Eliana Clem of Ballston Spa, American Heart Association Heart Princess throws out the first pitch at the Valley Cats game on July 25, 2016. Photo by Kim Sheedy, Heart Walk Director.

Eliana Clem, 7, of Ballston Spa, was born with four heart defects and underwent open heart surgery just two days after she was born. She’s healthy today, and took to the mound as one of the American Heart Association’s “cardiac kids,” according to News 10 ABC.

“When you have a child that has such a hard beginning and goes through open heart surgery, to be able to be here seven years later, it just brings a lot of joy to my heart,” Leah Clem, Eliana’s mother, told News 10.

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“We’re so proud of Eliana and proud of what God’s done,” said Chad Clem, her father. “And her name means ‘My God has answered.’ And so God’s answered our prayers and given us the faith to get through every single step of the way. And so we know she’s got a bright future ahead of her.”

Perhaps Clem’s presence was good luck for the ValleyCats, who went on to win the game against the Vermont Lake Monsters 13-1.

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