Richmond 9-Year-Old to Undergo Surgery to Lengthen Leg

Contributor: Lance Vaught
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Updated: 3/21 7:05 pm
A nine-year-old girl from Richmond will undergo an additional surgery to correct her right leg, which is much shorter than her left.

Neely Gannon's hip and knee joints were not completely formed when she was born, although everything under her knee was fine.

Despite recommendations from a surgeon to amputate the leg after her birth, Neely's parents traveled to Baltimore, where a doctor said the leg could be fixed.

Gannon underwent her first procedure when she was two, when a new hip joint was inserted. A limb-extension surgery followed two years later.

That surgery involved fixators being fitted to her leg, which pulled the bone apart over time and caused new bone and soft tissue to grow.

After therapy and further surgeries to make her muscles stronger and longer, Neely is now about to go through another operation to normalize her leg.

In this surgery, a rod will be inserted in the leg which will support it until the newly developed bone hardens.

However, Neely and her family must head to West Palm Beach, Florida for several months for the procedure and therapy.

Before they leave, a benefit for her and her family will be held at the Union City Ruritan Club and Fire Department on Saturday, from 5 to 6:30pm. Donations will be accepted and can also be made through the "Prayers for Neely" fund at any local US Bank, and through PayPal at

If all goes according to plan, Neely's father says she will have another -- and possibly final -- bone extension when she turns 13 or 14.
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