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Children’s Hospital patient who made Russell Wilson duct-tape wallet gets heart transplant

Russell Wilson and his wife, Ashton, meet with 11-year-old Children's Hospital patient Allison Christensen and her family. (Image courtesy Nicole Christensen)

The Children’s Hospital patient whose duct-tape wallet creation sparked an online frenzy after Russell Wilson debuted his new accessory at a press conference, has received a new heart.

Allison Christensen was admitted to Children’s Hospital in July after doctors discovered a serious heart condition. Her sister Nicole tells KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson Show that the diagnosis was a shock to the whole family.

“It was really scary. We had no idea that there was anything wrong with her heart. Her whole entire life, the only health issue we thought she had was asthma because she’s had really bad asthma since she was little. But she does a lot of sports. She really is an active little girl.”

Allison’s interest in sports was evident in her room at Children’s, which was adorned with Seahawks decor. The hsopital put her on a list to meet Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson, who visits the hospital every Tuesday.

After staff at Children’s told her she’d made the cut, she was excited for weeks, says Nicole. In preparation for Wilson’s visit, she also spent time making him one of her specialty duct-tape wallets.

“She’s been making them for awhile now. She first found out how to do it on YouTube,” says Nicole.

The day of Russell’s visit, Nicole says Allison wasn’t feeling well.

“The whole entire time she’s been at the hospital, this is the sickest I’ve ever seen her. She had a really bad stomach ache and a really bad headache. She was almost in tears because she was in so much pain.”

But that all changed as soon as her special visitor arrived.

“As soon as Russell Wilson came in, she did not seem sick at all. I literally have never seen a bigger smile on her face,” says Nicole.

During the visit, Allison gave the QB his special Seahawks wallet.

“When she gave it to him, him and his wife seemed so excited over it. They really liked it. They thought it was so cool,” says Nicole.

But that wasn’t the end of the glory for the unique wallet. Wilson then highlighted the handmade gift at a press conference on Thursday.

“The best part of my week, I go to Children’s Hospital every Tuesday, right? This 11-year-old girl, she made me this Seattle Seahawks wallet, so it’s one-of-a kind,” said Wilson, holding up the wallet for people to see.

“The coolest part about it is it’s all made out of duct tape,” said Wilson.

Nicole says they heard the news of the wallet’s TV debut and saw everyone talking about it on Twitter. But that wasn’t the only great thing that happened for Allison on Thursday.

On Wednesday, they got word there was a heart available. And on Thursday, Allison was taken in for her transplant, which Nicole says went well.

The whole ordeal has been a lot of ups and downs, Nicole says, but adds the family’s faith has been a big help in getting them through.

“So a combination of great doctors, great care, strong faith and Russell Wilson, maybe that is the combo you need to get through times like this,” says Dori.

“Yeah,” says Nicole.

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