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Dawson County family receives life-saving donation for toddler
Alliance together donation
Representatives from Alliance Together along with C.W. True Value Hardware and Family Connection donated a generator to the Leopard family of Dawsonville, pictured center. - photo by Julia Fechter

Like many others who live near downtown Dawsonville, the Leopard family was surprised when their power abruptly cut off around 8 p.m. on July 28.

One of two cars involved in an accident with injuries had collided with a transformer near Jack Heard Rd., breaking the power pole and causing a power outage that would last until roughly 4 a.m. the next morning. 

For most people, the outage would not have been a major health concern. But the event could’ve been a medical emergency for the Leopards’ two-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Adelyn.


This story continues below.

She has a rare condition called Trisomy 18 that requires her to be hooked up to a CPAP machine, oxygen concentrator and automatic feeding machine at night. 

Local nonprofit Alliance Together joined representatives from Family Connection and 

C.W. True Value Hardware at the Ga. 53 store Tuesday to donate a generator to the Leopards. 

The equipment would usually cost upwards of $500.

Alliance Together and the hardware business each contributed funds toward the generator. Officials from the nonprofit met Adelyn and her mother, Cat, during Family Connection’s recent Family Movie Night at Main Street Park, said Lisa Harbin with Alliance Together. 

Cat called the gift a “huge and extremely important blessing.”

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The Leopards stand with a newly-gifted generator that could help power their daughter Adelyn’s medical equipment in the event of another power outage. From left, Jeff, Adelyn, Autumn and Cat Leopard. - photo by Julia Fechter

“I was overwhelmed when Lisa called me and let me know that this was an opportunity…for us, it’s an answer to prayer,” she said. “We’ve been praying for help, we’ve been praying for a generator…so it’s a blessing to us as far as God listening to our needs.”

Cat reiterated that the generator is meeting an extremely important physical need “that's almost a life-threatening need.”

Adelyn’s CPAP and oxygen concentrator machines have to be plugged in, but the feeding pump can hold a couple-hour charge, she said. However, the night of July 28, that pump’s battery died, and her parents can’t do quick feeds because of her risk for aspiration. 

Cat noted that Adelyn could have required emergency medical care if the outage situation had persisted much longer. 

The Leopards hope to avoid a similar situation in the future, now that they have a generator. 

Trisomy 18 is a condition that causes severe developmental delays in babies, including an abnormally-shaped head, low birth weight and birth defects in organs that can be life-threatening.

In addition to the breathing and feeding machines, Adelyn requires leg braces as well as a GJ tube for feeding. She is slowly gaining weight, currently weighing 19 lbs. at 31 inches long. 

Cat said her younger daughter is “on her own spectrum” given her condition. 

Adelyn’s father, Jeff, said his family wasn’t expecting the donated generator, but they’re grateful. 

“[Getting] it is a lot of weight off our backs,” Jeff said. 

“It’s still considered incompatible with life,” Cat said of Adelyn’s Trisomy 18. “We honestly didn't know she was going to live this long, so for her to live 32 months, is just so amazing.” 


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Photo submitted to DCN.

Jeff currently works as the student pastor for the First Baptist Church of Dawsonville. Cat cannot work because they haven’t found a nurse to come care for Adelyn. 

However, the Leopards are approved for 70 hours per week for a nurse to come into the home and help care for Adelyn.

They have been unable to find anyone to fill this funded position and are still looking for someone to fulfill that role, according to Alliance Together. 

The family also has a wish list for other necessities: 

  • Size 4 diapers

  • Wipes

  • Gift cards for groceries (Walmart, Kroger, etc...)

  • 18 month – 24-month clothing – (18-month Fall/Winter) (24 month Spring/Summer)

  • Gas cards to travel to doctors and therapies (The Leopards travel to the Scottish Rite and Egleston hospitals in Atlanta every week)

  • Rear-facing car seat (Graco Extend2Fit 3-in-1 car seat, Norah) on Amazon

  • Graco Fast Action Fold Jogging Stroller, Gotham 40x24x42”

 To coordinate getting donations to the family, people can email info@alliancetogether.org or visit the website at www.Alliancetogether.org.

The Leopards have also started a hashtag for Adelyn on Instagram and Facebook called #adelynleopardstrong.