Nightly News   |  July 08, 2013

Kids with heart defects find their inner superhero

Thanks to the big-hearted volunteers at Heart Heroes, children diagnosed with heart defects are better able to face their fears.  NBC’s Kevin Tibbles reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> finally tonight, our making a difference report, a program that helps kids with heart problems . appropriately called heart heroes, and nbc's kevin tibbles with our "making a difference" report.

>> let's check under the hood, bud.

>> reporter: you would never know it, but 6-year-old dylan rassmussen is a super hero .

>> sounds good.

>> a good thing, as the past year is not easy on dylan and his family. born with a congenital heart defect , he to undergo open heart surgery .

>> that was really hard. having to go back with the surgeon.

>> reporter: dylan confronted his surgery like a man of steel.

>> we got him a cape, made especially for him.

>> reporter: a shiny silk cape from heart heroes. helping kids with a cape battling forces beyond their control.

>> they don't have to worry about the disease, the hospital visit visits.

>> these women founded heart heroes whether their own children faced devastating heart problems . ashley is now 12.

>> makes you feel brave.

>> reporter: putting this on when you were a kid made you feel like had you superhuman powers . guess what? some of the powers are real.

>> the cape doesn't help me reroute the vessels, but for the child to go into the operation feeling brave, it's -- it lets them think about their experience with a positive attitude. i did it, i can do it.

>> reporter: and the good thing, those powers also rub off on the parents.

>> when we were going through our darkest times, any little thing is what we hung onto.

>> all right? good.

>> reporter: for a kid facing down the darkness. it's good to know and you your doctor can leap tall buildings together. kevin tibbles, chicago.