A little man with tremendous fighting spirit

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In the blink of an eye, little Emerson’s survival was at stake. His family feared for his life.

Emerson is a cheerful and lively little boy. His laughter, however, conceals a gruelling story. The story of a fighter. When Emerson was a mere one and a half years old, a cyst formed on his spine and started pressing on his spinal cord. The result: an incomplete spinal cord injury at the level of the 6th/7th cervical vertebrae. A catastrophic diagnosis for his parents. “The day we learned that our child could no longer walk was certainly the worst day of our lives. It breaks your heart,” says Emerson’s mother Anna-Marina.

After a period of anger, grief, fear, and overextension, the family of five resolved to face the grave fate of their youngest member and created a certain degree of normality. Emerson duly learned how to play wheelchair tennis and basketball, started meeting peers, and even started attending an age-appropriate school.
Then, in 2020, his health suddenly deteriorated dramatically. Emerson caught a high fever, experienced chills, and his heartrate skyrocketed. “Our worst nightmare had come true. Despite utmost caution, our child had contracted Covid-19.” Emerson’s immune system is permanently compromised by his spinal cord injury, meaning that the virus is life-threatening for him. “We despaired and asked ourselves what else we might have to endure,” says Anna-Marina.
The family feared for the life of their little boy for days. Finally, his condition improved. Now that his life is out of danger, Emerson has been told he can recover at home in quarantine in South East England, where his parents and siblings take care of him around the clock. “We are doing well again. We are eternally grateful that Emerson’s illness proved relatively mild.”

Wings for Life funds spinal cord research projects all over the world to find a cure for spinal cord Injuries. To support us you can take part at the Wings for Life World Run or donate here. Thank you!