Dreams will come true for ill Scott City child
By: Crystal Britt
By: Crystal Britt
SCOTT CITY, Mo. - Remember the first time you saw the ocean? Think back, you can almost hear the waves crashing, and see the sun's reflection on the water. Those are the memories people from Scott City are hoping to bring to 12-year-old Chad Ing.
Chad's like any other sixth grader except he was born deaf, and doctor's recently diagnosed him with a rare incurable syndrome. The condition's also causing him to go blind. But, right now every one of his senses can detect the kindness expressed from those around him.
He runs, and plays just as hard if not more so than the rest of his peers. Chad loves football, and just about anything that involves getting dirty. "He likes to ride his bike, swim, go camping - anything a normal child would do - he loves to do it all", said Chad's aunt, Sonya Blankenship.
Chad has a cochlear implant to help him hear. He lives with his Uncle Gary and Aunt Sonya Blankenship. They're raising Chad now, and consider him one of their own. Last summer they noticed a problem with Chad's vision.
The diagnosis: Usher Syndrome. It's a condition that will eventually lead to blindness. 'It was hard, it was really hard to hear with him being deaf and to know he's going to lose his eye sight--it was overwhelming", said Sonya. The family gets a lot of support from Chad's school. "He's not shy, he jumps right in and no matter what the other kids are doing he's right in the middle of it", said Becca Underwood-Chad's Deaf Educator.
Chad's never seen the ocean. One day, someone caught wind of his wish to one day go. "Apparently Uncle Gary off handedly mentioned he wished they had the money to take him to the ocean", said Lana Arnzen-6th Grade Teacher. That comment set off a whirlwind of plans. Money raised from upcoming raffles, and a middle school dance will all go toward Chad's dream trip.
"Everyday, students just come up to me and hand me money and say this is for Chad's benefit", said Arnzen. Chad's now ocean bound and couldn't be happier. "He's just a special little boy, he deserves everything, he deserves it all", said Sonya. "This is a memory making time for all the students and Chad, and we just want to make it special for him", said Arnzen.
Chad's already considered legally blind, and it's now just a matter of time. While he's losing so much he's gaining memories, memories he'll treasure the rest of his life. "I don't know how it's going to go in the future, but I think God will make it okay, and it'll be alright", said Sonya.