The Willie Fund for Hydrocephalus Research at Lurie Children's Hospital
Hydrocephalus means "water on the brain" in Latin. It occurs when the brain produces cerebral spinal fluid or CSF, but the brain can no longer absorb the CSF. Willie developed hydrocephalus as an infant when he had a brain hemorrhage. Hydrocephalus is treated through the use of a shunt, which diverts the CSF from the brain to another part of the body. However, for many people, like Willie, the shunts don't work properly and they need frequent surgeries to repair the shunts and relieve the life-threatening CFS pressure that builds up in their brain. Most of Willie's nearly 200 surgeries have been performed at The Lurie Children's Hospital. The Willie Fund for Hydrocephalus Research was established at the hospital to help the doctors and researchers develop better ways to treat children with hydrocephalus. The "I'll Take the Diamond" shirt was created by Willie. All profits from the sale of that shirt will be donated to the Willie Fund for Hydrocephalus Research and will help make a difference in the lives of thousands of children that suffer from hydrocephalus.