Help Us Help Heroes

Posted by Lisa Burkhart on Jun 4, 2015 9:00:00 AM

Helping Heroes Fund: Johnny

In recognition of Military Appreciation Month, 1st Class Medical has teamed up with the COPD store to launch The Helping Heroes Fund to provide portable oxygen concentrators, nebulizers, mobility aids and other necessary equipment to active duty soldiers, veterans, and veteran’s organizations. We have set up a GoFundMe Account to accept donations and a portion of all accessory sales in June will go to this fund. You can go to www.COPDStore.com and click on the Helping Heroes nomination link on the top right to nominate a person or organization that you think could benefit from one of these products. Winners will be announced on July 4th.

To start off the program 1st Class Medical, The COPD Store and SeQual are giving two SeQual Eclipse 5s to a young boy named Johnny. Johnny’s dad, Tom is currently deployed in the Middle East fighting the war on terror. His wife Julie is left alone to care for Johnny and their other children. 

Johnny is 16. He has big expressive brown eyes and a close cropped haircut much like his Dad’s military cut. Johnny was born with a number of physical challenges. He is confined to a wheelchair largely due to congenital hypotonia which is a state of low muscle tone and weakness. Because of this he is largely sedentary and he is prone to bronchitis and pneumonia. Johnny also has legionnaire’s disease which is severe lung inflammation usually caused by infection. These conditions have left his lungs severely scarred. In 2014 Johnny’s oxygen levels dipped so low that they feared he might not survive.  But Johnny made it through, though now he lives at a care center where he can receive the around the clock medical attention that he needs. He requires oxygen 24 hours a day to maintain his oxygen levels. 

Though Johnny can’t communicate verbally, he is able to convey emotions like everyone. He will smile and laugh when enjoying something or turn his head away when he dislikes something.  Johnny enjoys building with blocks and arranging items in his cooler which is his favorite toy. He also enjoys going to the park or zoo with his family and watching community sporting events.  Unfortunately his need for oxygen has kept him from doing these things in the past year but with his new portable oxygen concentrator he will once again be able to get out for fun as well as to important medical appointments.

Johnny’s mom Julie says, “I only want a normal life for my son.  I realize he is a special child. I just want him to continue to experience those little things in life that are so important to him like spending time at the park with his family. The oxygen concentrator will make this happen. Just knowing I can again bring him home to spend time with me brings tears to my eyes.  I am so grateful to all the wonderful people who are helping. I don’t know what to say.  My heart is so happy.”

To contribute to the Helping Heroes Fund please CLICK HERE.  There is no minimum donation and every little bit helps! To nominate a soldier, veteran, or veteran’s organization, please CLICK HERE.

Topics: Helping Heroes Fund