COLLEGEVILLE, Pa. (CBS) — When it comes to an illness, sometimes there is no cure, but that doesn’t mean money can’t help with treatment. That’s what a family in Montgomery County found after having a child with a brain injury. The Stankunas family say they want to give back after getting so much help with their family.
The Stankunas family of Collegeville enjoys a regular day. That’s a precious gift. When Isabella was born three years ago, they weren’t sure any day would be regular again.
“Based upon her MRI results, it showed significant brain injury,” said Jake Stankunas, Isabella’s father.
Michele Stankunas, Isabella’s mother, said they had to discuss a Do Not Resuscitate order, “something that you never expect to have to talk about with your newborn that, you know, you were expecting to be born otherwise healthy,” said Michele Stankunas, Isabella’s mother.
Isabella had brain damage from a parechovirus. She wasn’t expected to walk or talk, but she’s doing both and more. One nurse nicknamed her a “miracle in motion.”
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Her mom and dad decided to start the Miracle in Motion Foundation to help other parents of children with brain injuries like Kristin Giammatteo and her son Sam, who has cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Miracle in Motion is paying for Sam’s therapeutic riding at Sebastian Riding in Collegeville.
“He spends half an hour grooming the horse, using two hands, bilateral movement and all that, and then half an hour riding,” said Giammatteo. “Doing wonderful things on the horse, trotting and putting his hands over his head.”
He thinks it’s fun, but Mom knows he’s building muscle and training his brain to move his body.
Recently, Michele got to meet Kristin and see for herself how Miracle in Motion is helping a family.
“I get chills watching Sam, meeting Kristin,” Michele said.
It’s the first miracle of what they hope is many.
“There are a lot of families out there still waiting for their miracle,” Michele said.
Miracle in Motion is also raising money for research into parechoviruses. For more information, head to their website, MiracleInMotion.org.
For more information on the Miracle in Motion foundation, click here.
Reported by Dave Huddleston, CBS 3