Ronald McDonald House

An Unexpected Detour

September 2013

By Gene Davis

It happens more than you might think—with nearly 8 million visitors coming to Hawaii annually. Sometimes it is a premature birth that complicates their trips. Or it can be other medical emergencies that bring out-of-state families to Hawaii’s Ronald McDonald House.

For the Clark family from Houston, Texas, their sudden emergency took the form of a freak Manoa landslide that sent a boulder directly onto 7-year-old Leila, and causing serious injury. Peter and Lena Clark were hiking with Leila and 4-year old son Pierce when the unexpected happened. "It really was like a natural disaster movie," Lena told KITV News.

Clark and RMHC Family
The Clarks posed for a parting photo with the RMHC-HI staff. Bottom row, Leila and Pierce bid “aloha” to their new extended family as they left for home.

It all happened fast and Lena could only watch as a 15-pound boulder slammed into her daughter. It took rescue crews an hour to reach them. Leila had six broken ribs, a collapsed lung, and a deep gash in her back.

During Leila’s two-week hospitalization, the Clark family found refuge at Ronald McDonald House.

"We're blessed to be where we are right now," said dad Peter while waiting for Leila to get well enough to travel home. “We are so grateful for all the support from trail guides, emergency crews, hospital staff and the Ronald McDonald House!”

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