LAS VEGAS, Aug. 18, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Tomorrow, as Americans celebrate the miracle of flight on National Aviation Day, 11-year-old Madalyn Forrister will mark the occasion in her own way, by boarding a Miracle Flight to life-changing medical care.
The blonde and bubbly sixth-grader is your typical cheerleading, Tik Tok–loving tween, who dreams of one day starring on the Disney Channel. Madalyn is also bound to a wheelchair, battling a terminal form of muscular dystrophy. Tomorrow, she will take her sixth Miracle Flight from Las Vegas to Denver for the specialized treatment that’s giving her and her family what they all want most: more time.
Madalyn was just 18 months old when local doctors diagnosed her with spinal muscular atrophy. The rare condition affects just in 1 in 10,000 Americans and prevents the body from building and maintaining muscle—making physical functions impossible. While there is no cure, the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) advised Madalyn’s family of a treatment in Denver that could slow the progression of the disease, as well as the life-threatening complications that come with it, such as reduced lung capacity caused by severe scoliosis and an increased risk of pneumonia.
At first, the family was paying for their own flights for Madalyn’s treatments—a spinal injection every three to four months—but travel costs quickly mounted. Another MDA family recommended Miracle Flights, the national charity that provides free plane tickets to help critically ill children and their families reach specialized medical care far from home.
«Without Miracle Flights, I don’t feel we would have been able to get the quality care that Madalyn, first of all, deserves, and also that she needs,» says Madalyn’s mother, Christina. «When you have a disabled or sick child, you can feel all alone. So when you find resources like Miracle Flights, it means so much. Any time we’ve needed anything, Miracle Flights has been there to help.»
Madalyn is one of the many Miracle Flyers who must continue traveling for medical treatment in spite of the Covid-19 crisis. «The medication she receives has to be given at a certain date and time. We’ve delayed her treatment as long as possible because of the coronavirus, but now we have to go,» says her mother.
To help Madalyn and other children continue their medical journeys amid the pandemic, or to request a flight for your own family, please visit www.miracleflights.org.
About Miracle Flights
Miracle Flights is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that provides free air transportation to children and adults who need help reaching specialty medical care only available far from home. The organization, founded in 1985, has provided 129,438 flights and typically books more than 600 flights per month on commercial airlines across the United States. To request a flight, learn more or donate, call 800-359-1711 or visit miracleflights.org. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram.
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SOURCE Miracle Flights