By writer to www.postandcourier.com
A primary grader at Johnston Elementary College is in line for a coronary heart transplant thanks partially to his faculty and neighborhood which helped elevate cash and spreading the phrase.
Lamere Johnson is a 7-year-old who was recognized with hyperplastic left coronary heart syndrome earlier than he was even born, Contessa Culbreath, Johnson’s mother stated.
“They informed me earlier than they did the entire surgical procedures that sooner or later, he might have a coronary heart transplant and that is the place we’re at now, seven years later he’s needing a coronary heart transplant,” Culbreath stated.
He has had three open-heart surgical procedures to date, together with one when he was solely 5 days outdated. His second surgical procedure was at 6 months and his most up-to-date at three years outdated.
The surgical procedure carried out when he was three years outdated was purported to be the tip of the guts issues, however that was not the case.
Johnson is presently on a ready listing on the Medical College of South Carolina for his coronary heart transplant, which prices $500,000. Culbreath stated the cash being raised shall be used for transplant-related bills, payments – since she is not going to be working – and housing and journey bills through the time Johnson receives his transplant.
“It’s wonderful how the neighborhood has come collectively to assist him to assist us. Lamere’s simply basking within the fame. He’s simply having fun with it,” Culbreath stated, “His faculty has raised cash, the entire colleges in Edgefield County have raised cash for him, they’ve donated to his COTA (Kids’s Organ Transplant Affiliation) account, they’ve gotten different folks to do fundraisers – it’s wonderful.”
Makinzie Corley, a pre-Ok assistant at Johnston Elementary College, helped arrange a marketing campaign, known as Hearts for Lamere, with the assistance of the varsity’s principal, which is a service venture that was created to get the scholars concerned in giving again and instructing them the sensation of gratitude from giving all whereas serving to Johnson and his mother.
Corley has identified Johnson for a pair years now and met him when he began kindergarten. She stated she instantly fell in love with him and his infectious persona.
“Hearts for Lamere took off like a rocket to the sky,” Corley stated, “I imply it has been really unreal watching how shortly these blessings have been coming in.”
Johnston Elementary College together with many different colleges in the neighborhood are promoting paper hearts for $1 every with the donor’s title on every coronary heart bought, and the hearts are added to a sequence of hearts within the hallway. Corley stated there have been folks coming into the varsity to donate from the neighborhood, sending donations on to COTA and even mailing in donations from everywhere in the nation connected with good notes.
The venture not too long ago ended on the finish of February, however persons are nonetheless free to make donations.
“Lamere’s COTA account objective was initially $45,000, however with the assistance of a lot of beneficiant souls and by the grace of God we’ve got surpassed the $45,000,” Corley stated.
As of Monday, the present quantity raised is $53,956, with the brand new objective of $65,000 in response to Johnson’s COTA.
“I simply need Lamere to be wholesome. That’s it – I simply need him to be wholesome,” Culbreath stated, “I simply need him to be like a standard youngster and simply take pleasure in life.”
Culbreath stated as soon as Johnson will get his coronary heart transplant, they’re hoping that all the pieces shall be effective with him as a result of he likes to play sports activities. He presently has a peripherally inserted central catheter, or PICC, in his proper arm that’s conserving his coronary heart valves open so the blood can move out whereas he’s ready for his transplant, which limits his regular actions.
“He has expressed many instances his best want is to be wholesome sufficient to play soccer, so I’m very a lot wanting ahead to the day that I get to take a seat within the stands of little league, center faculty, highschool, school, then the NFL and cheer for my candy boy sporting a jersey along with his title on it,” Corley stated.
Corley additionally stated she prays for an extended and wholesome future for him and needs him to achieve success academically and develop in his relationship with the Lord.
“Lamere figuring out that he has to have the guts transplant, it’s not attending to him, he’s a contented child and he’s simply having fun with life, prefer it’s not getting him down. He doesn’t cry, he simply needs to be a child and that’s how I deal with him, and that’s how I would love everybody else to deal with him similar to he’s a standard child,” Culbreath stated.
Johnson is presently ready for a brand new coronary heart and doesn’t know precisely when he could have the process accomplished. His restoration time will depend upon how nicely his physique reacts to his new coronary heart.