A group of family members, friends and concerned citizens are now in the middle of a fundraising process to help a local citizen who is in dire need of a lung transplant.
Colin Wilson, now 22, was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis when he was 6 months old. The Meadow resident and his family have been dealing with the genetic disorder ever since.
The battle includes a total of 14 medications for his lungs and his digestive system. He does airway clearance every day to keep the lungs from building up bacteria which cause lung infections. He has been hospitalized almost every other month since September of 2015.
“I have so many things that I would like to do like going to college and being able to continue my passion for drawing,” Mr. Wilson said. “I want to be able to breathe for the first time without stopping every 15 minutes to catch my breath.”
Now doctors at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill tell him without a double lung transplant he has a maximum of two years to live. In order to get on the list, his great- uncle, Thomas Jernigan of Dunn, said he needs $40,000. The money is partially needed to help pay Mr. Wilson’s expenses while he is going through the treatment process.
Part of that includes $15,000 just to get on the transplant list. The $40,000 would cover most expenses of the surgery in addition to paying to resolve issues which could arise following the transplant operation.
That need has sparked action from family members.
Mr. Jernigan is the brother of Mr. Wilson’s grandfather. “We are going to raise that money one way or another,” Mr. Jernigan said. “We have our whole family involved trying to do this. One hundred percent of the profits will go to help Colin.”
Louise Bruckner is also helping with the fundraising effort. “The family and friends of Colin Wilson want to encourage everyone to attend our gospel sing which will give Colin a second chance at life,” Ms. Bruckner said.
Mr. Wilson said all donations would be accepted.
“I would greatly appreciate any help and support that people can possibly give,” Mr. Wilson said. “It doesn’t matter how much people give because any amount is one step closer to this wonderful gift that I have been given.”
Fundraising boxes have already gone up at areas around town. The first of several fundraising events will Friday, June 3, at 7 p.m. with a gospel sing held at the Gospel Tabernacle church in Dunn. Scheduled performers include The Believers, the Maples Family, Glory Bound Way, Carolina Traditions, the Gospel Tabernacle choir as well as Danny and Garrett Lee.
Other events may include a walk or run event on the Dunn-Erwin Rail Trail. Mr. Jernigan said the family would like to hold three fundraisers.
In addition to raising money at the local level, Colin’s family has asked for assistance from the Children’s Organ Transplant Association, or COTA. That is a national charity based in Bloomington, Ind. COTA is dedicating and organizing communities in raising funds for transplant related expenses.
For more information about the gospel sing or other fundraising and volunteer opportunities, local residents can contact Ms. Bruckner at (910) 893-6406 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Courtesy The Daily Record