Help Spare the Life of Eliza O’Neill
By John Livingston Clark
Eliza O’Neill at the present time is a normal four year old girl who loves to sing, run, cuddle, and get rowdy with her older brother. Unfortunately, she was diagnosed with a missing essential enzyme required for the normal functioning of cells.
By age six Eliza will begin to experience symptoms of this rare disease known as Sanfilippo Syndrome, unless money is raised in time to make medicine and provide treatment. Age six is the point of no return for the little girl because that is when irreversible symptoms begin. Treatment must begin before that if her life is to be spared.
Here is the way this ugly monster works. Toxic materials will begin to build up in her brain and body. Brain damage will then lead to loss of speech, an inability to walk and feed herself, and seizures. Severe disability and death will occur before her teenage years. Added to this is that the parents,Glen and Cara, will have to witness their daughter take a very painful downhill slide, an unimaginable journey for any parent.
The gene therapy which has worked in laboratory mice is scheduled to be tried in late 2014. Although there are some risks involved, if successful the therapy will stop the spread of the disease overnight. The only thing needed is money, and a lot of it! Glen and Cara O’Neill, along with other families whose children are afflicted with Sanfilippo Syndrome, have embarked upon an intense, non-stop, fundraising effort. Not only would Eliza be spared but many other children as well.
The fundraising campaign through “Go Fund Me” has already raised $700,000 in seven months, but 1 million dollars is needed by June. It will support the gene therapy trial at National Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. This non-profit has no paid employees. Eventually, the total amount that needs to be raised is 2.5 million.
The O’Neills can be contacted at www.curesff.org or emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org. Checks can be mailed to: Cure Sanfilippo Foundation, P.0. Box 6901, Columbus, South Carolina, 29260. You may also leave a prayer on our forum or in the comments for the O’Neill’s, their fundraising campaign, and the success of the treatment