‘Little Vader’ Max Page Undergoes Successful Heart Surgery
Max Page, the 7-year-old boy who played Darth Vader in the popular Volkswagen commercial during the 2011 Super Bowl, underwent successful heart surgery at Children's Hospital Los Angeles on Wednesday, according to the ad agency Deutsch LA.
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"Max had a pretty peaceful night," his mother, Jennifer Page, said, according to ABC News. "This morning he gave us the thumbs up and he said 'hi' to his brother, Els, and told him he loved him."
Page was born with a congenital heart defect, and doctors replaced his pulmonary valve and repaired a hole in his heart during the two hour surgery. The valve is expected to last 15 years before it will need to be replaced in a noninvasive procedure.
Although he was scared before the surgery, Page eventually understood that he had to go through with it, according to MSNBC.
"I don't have a choice. I have to go through it," his mom recalled him saying. "I don't like it and it's still scary - but I have to. So I think I might as well go through it with a good attitude."
Page is expected to remain in the hospital for the next five days, and will spend the next six to eight weeks recovering. His mother said that while Max was initially upset that he would not be able to play outside over the summer, they are making the best of it.
"Everything that was boring is now in our small garage and everything that is fun is out and accessible," Jennifer Page told NBC News. "We're so lucky that we have an articulate son that's able to tell us how to help him."
In addition to the Volkswagen commercial, Page has also appeared on the soap opera "The Young and the Restless" and on NBC's "Prime Suspect." He has been treated at Children's Hospital Los Angeles since he was an infant, and serves as the facility's "junior ambassador."
"If you use your force and dream big, you can achieve anything," Page tells other kids in the hospital, according to ABC News. "We may be small but we are mighty."
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