NEW BADEN, Ill. — An Illinois family is asking for your help celebrating a milestone nearly two years after a stranger donated life to their son.
Three-year-old Ira Carroll is your typical toddler.
“He’s the handful we always wished for,” said Ira’s mom, Caitlyn Carroll.
However, moments like this weren’t always guaranteed for the Carroll family.
“At 35 weeks we finally got the officially diagnosis oligohydramnios, which is loss of amniotic fluid, and he had end stage renal disease,” said Carroll.
After 18 months of dialysis treatment the Carroll family received a call that would change their lives.
“We had an angel donor,” said Carroll.
“They saved your son’s life,” said 5 On Your Side reporter Holden Kurwicki.
“They did,” said Carroll. “It was a 9-year-old. That’s all we know.”
That donation saved the lives of at least four children.
“I did write them a letter, and I said thank you, and I’m sorry,” said Carroll. “That’s the only words I’ve ever been able to come up with.”
Now that Ira is happy and healthy.
“We want to honor the life that was given and honor the lives that have a second chance because of those donations,” said Carroll.
With the second anniversary of Ira ’s transplant quickly approaching the Carroll’s are collecting money for Make-a-Wish, and 1-year-old Benjamin Hay recently had a heart transplant, by selling shirts with Ira’s favorite phrase.
“He says all the time be big and brave,” said Carroll. “He goes in and gets blood work every month. When he goes in and he tells the ladies he's going to be big and brave, and he hands over his arm, and they do the blood. They do the blood, and he's big and brave.”
A subtle reminder that we can all be big and brave by donating life.
“You get to choose to give a kid like Ira a chance at life,” said Carroll.
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