Hometown: Moorpark, CAGame: UCLA vs. Arizona
Bibiana "Bibi" Von Rueden spent the first three-and-a-half years of her life on dialysis until receiving a kidney transplant at UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital. Bibi and her parents know she will likely need another transplant someday, but that doesn’t get her down.
“She takes it like a trooper,” says her father, Patrick. “She’s able to persevere. She has special needs and people see that, but she doesn’t let that stop her.”
Bibi still comes for doctor visits at the hospital, and her parents consider UCLA Health family. As big Los Angeles sports fans, it was extra special for Bibi to be honored as Kid Captain for the Bruins’ football game against Arizona at the Rose Bowl on Oct. 20.
Bibi joined the UCLA Health employee tailgate, where she mixed and mingled with more than 400 people. She also watched warmups from the field, getting closer to the action than she had ever been.
“Kid Captain is an opportunity for her to know there are more options out there than just being home,” says her mother, Rosa. “There’s a big world that she doesn’t know yet.”