‘We’re blessed to have her:’ Corn maze honors infant born with critical congenital heart defect

ROSS, Ohio — An infant who survived open-heart surgery was honored with a message of love, in the form of a corn maze in Ross, Ohio.

Just months ago, Karen Burwinkel didn’t know if her newborn baby, Ruth, was going to make it.

She was born with a critical congenital heart defect, leaving her with little oxygen and a desperate fight to survive.

At just 1-month-old, she had open-heart surgery. The recovery period was long and uncertain.

Ruth Burwinkel

“They didn’t know if there would be brain damage,” said Burwinkel. “They didn’t know if there would be any long-term deficits.”

The tiny warrior made a comeback, and it’s being celebrated at Burwinkel Farms for everyone to see.

“I was honored and so glad they chose Ruth as the center of attention for the fall festivities here,” Burwinkel said.

Baby Ruth, Heart Warrior was the theme for the giant corn maze. The design goes on for acres.

Ruth Burwinkel

Bobby Burwinkel said the decision to make it was a no-brainer, and it took him only an hour to create.

“I mean, this is the year for Ruth,” said Bobby Burwinkel. “I mean, we’re so blessed to have her with us this year.”

“With the support of our family and friends and the community, we wouldn’t have been able to do it without them, and they gave her the strength she needed to get through, and also our family,” Karen Burwinkel said.

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