On Friday night the Greenwich High School girls volleyball team did something special for a special little boy named Ben. Ben Chisholm is the 16-month old son of former GHS student-athlete Becky Ranta from the class of 1998.
Becky was a three sport athlete who excelled in volleyball, basketball and softball. Her son Ben Chisholm has a disease called Acute Flaccid Myelitis.
It all started when Ben, a perfectly healthy little boy came down with what everyone thought was a cold six weeks ago. Within four days he was on a respirator and could not move, a paraplegic.
This mystifying disease or virus attacks the nervous system – especially the gray matter of the spinal cord. It can cause weakness in limbs, face, oral or eye muscle and in severe cases can cause permanent paralysis.
This very rare disease that affects one in a million has seen some recent increases in reported cases. The cause is believed to be different viruses, possibly Enteroviruses, Andenoviruses and West Nile Virus. Scientists are still unclear why some children get AFM after an infection while others don’t.
On Friday the volleyball players wore t-shirts to honor Ben and created a video montage to send to Ben.
To learn more about AFM click on the website www.myelitis.org
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