Strutters raise $25K for McCall

Published 11:32 am Wednesday, May 31, 2017

A child and his family in Charlotte County have funds to continue covering his care from a serious disease, thanks to the help of the the High Bridge Strutters Chapter of the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF).

The chapter held its 10th annual Hunting Heritage Banquet in Farmville in early April, which brought more than 400 participants to Fuqua School, according to Committee Member Andy Ellington.

Carson McCall, 4, and his family were recipients of the fundraiser, which raised $25,000 in donations in less than 30 minutes, Ellington said.

Carson, who lives with his family in Red Oak, was diagnosed with Globoid Cell Leukodystrophy, also known as Krabbe Disease, last June. The disease affects the nervous system and impaired Carson’s ability to walk.

There is no cure for Krabbe Disease, according a news release of the High Bridge Strutters event, and in many cases, those with Krabbe Disease in their infant years do not live past two years of age.

Because Carson had a late infantile stage of Krabbe Disease, he was eligible for a stem cell transplant and received chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. That and an unrelated transplant meant Carson had appointments at the hospital over the course of several months.

He is now recovering from the transplant as his immune system strengthens.

Teri McCall, Carson’s mother, said her son was not able to attend the banquet due to his illness, but said that several family members attended.

Teri said she appreciated the response from the numerous participants and having the chapter’s resources available.

“They were eager to learn about Carson, and we had a good time,” McCall said.

McCall said that for families with children with serious illnesses, unexpected expenses come up. She said she and her family lived between two different homes during Carson’s treatment and both required upkeep.

“It’s great to know that we don’t have to turn down any options for Carson because of the fundraiser,” McCall said.

Ellington said the organization’s committee made the decision to raise money each year for a family that included a child with a serious illness. He said the organization’s funds often go to out-of-region or national organizations. He said he wants the organization to do what it could to help people in the area.

“A lot of the money that we raise for the organization leaves the area, but we felt we could do something that would have a positive impact on the community,” Ellington said, who added the organization has raised more than $100,000 for local families in the past five years.

He added he was overwhelmed by the response of the participants.

“It’s unbelievable, the caring and the love that’s in the community,” Ellington said. “The outpouring of love, to want to help an individual with that kind of money to be appropriated in less than 30 minutes, it says so much about our community.”