Baby with rare illness dies despite surgery

Jonah Puruleski
A courtesy photo of Jonah Puruleski.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A baby boy whose Kentwood parents fought to get him a surgery they thought could extend his life has died.

“Jonah bravely flew into the arms of Jesus today at 1:42 pm” at a Columbus, Ohio hospital, his mother posted Wednesday evening on the Facebook page was using to record his story.

Jonah Puruleski was only about 3 months old.

He was born April 26 with a rare condition called Trisomy 18 or Edwards Disease caused by an extra chromosome. In his case, it caused severe heart defects.

His parents, Heather and Greg Puruleski of Kentwood, wanted him to have a surgery they thought could give him a chance at a longer life. Doctors at the University of Michigan hospital in Ann Arbor said the surgery was too risky, but doctors at Nationwide Children’s Hospital at Ohio State University said they would try. However, citing the U of M doctors’ decision, their health insurer refused to pay for the surgery.

After hearing their story on 24 Hour News 8, a retired attorney from Rockford gave the family the money they needed to get Jonah to Columbus.

He underwent the surgery in June, according to the Facebook page, but was never well enough to leave the hospital in Columbus.

According to the Facebook page, both of Jonah’s parents were with him when he died.

Funeral services for Jonah will be Monday at 1 p.m. at Cornerstone United Methodist Church, located at 1675 84th St. SE south of Kentwood. Visitation will be Sunday from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Matthysse Kuiper DeGraaf Chapel at 4646 Kalamazoo Ave.

Condolences may be sent online at


Trisomy 18 Foundation

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