DENHAM SPRINGS — A goal for many parents is to help make many of their children’s wishes or desires come true. Sherry Larson is attempting to do just that, but in a heartbreaking situation.
Larson’s 12-year-old son Brady suffers from Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD). According to the National Library of Medicine, it is one of the most severe forms of inherited muscular dystrophies and the most common hereditary neuromuscular disease. No known treatment stops the progression of the disease. Affected patients usually die in their twenties due to respiratory muscle weakness or cardiomyopathy, according to research.
“There’s nothing (treatment) for him,” Larson explained, “It affects every muscle in your entire body. We found out in the summer he had compression fractures in his back.”
After learning of the heartbreaking revelation that her son is suffering from a terminal condition, Larson pivoted to making a bucket list for the pre-teen.
She said they had been to Disney several times, which wouldn’t make his list. Then she thought about her son’s favorite time of year.
“He loves scary stuff. He’s always talked about wanting to go to a haunted house,” she said. “He loves to be scared. Halloween is his favorite. He’s never been able to go in one. He’s talked about it forever and ever. He’s never been able to walk far. Now he can’t walk long distances at all. He will need a wheelchair in the next year.”
Larson is hoping to find a haunted house that Brady can attend that is also handicap accessible.
She said they enrolled Brady in a clinical trial in Atlanta, which consists of the family going there every 3-4 months. He’s been a part of the trial for two years. All of his doctors are in Cincinnati, Ohio.
“It’s not just Brady but all the kids with this disease, they can’t do anything,” Larson said. “It’s so sad.”
Because of Brady’s condition, Larson said she knows her son’s health will deteriorate over time, which is hard to live with. Despite all he is facing, she said her son has stayed positive.
“He’s very positive. He’s only 12 and amazes me every day,” she said. “He doesn’t let things get him down. I have anxiety so bad. It’s very hard and gut-wrenching, and seeing him so positive, he amazes me. I don’t know where he gets it from. It’s not me. He’s such a fantastic child, and it’s heartbreaking.”
“It scares me to death,” she added. “He’s going to quit walking forever, and that’s hard. The stress of getting a van/SUV for $80,000 is hard. It’s hard watching your son deteriorate. He has low lung function and compression fractures already at 12. It’s frustrating.”
The mother is hoping to make her son’s wish come true.