GREENFIELD — On a recent afternoon at his mother’s home, 2-year-old Hunter Dalton dashed across the living room, his attention never focused on one thing for more than a few seconds.
A typical toddler, he grabbed for anything that caught his attention – his mother’s purse, dumping its contents, Midnight the cat’s tail, prompting a warning swat.
From his cheerful demeanor, no one would ever guess the toddler had open-heart surgery just three weeks ago.
Save for the impressive scar stretching down his chest to bellybutton, any way.
Hunter of Greenfield was born with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome, a congenital defect affecting the development of the left side of the heart.
The condition is rare, and it has required three heart surgeries so far, each aimed at reconstructing Hunter’s heart so it will pump blood more efficiently throughout his body. Eventually, he’ll have to have a heart transplant.
This weekend, Hunter’s mother, Carissa Dalton, 23, of Greenfield, will share her son’s story with dozens who gather for the 16th annual March for Babies Walk in Greenfield.