Walk for Wishes: Stepping up to Help Tyler

For most people, participating in an event like Walk for Wishes is simply one of those feel-good things. It’s fun and noble to bring a little joy to a child with a life-threatening illness.

But Paragon Properties’ intentions hit a little closer to home.

Tyler Ryan Ruffin is a 6-year-old boy who lives in Paragon Properties’ Westwood Village in Westland. He was once a healthy, playful and vibrant child until was diagnosed with a degenerative neurological condition known as Cerebellar Atrophy at the age of 4. After going from doctor to doctor and four neurologists, he was given a general diagnosis based on a MRI of his brain in July 2010. As of November 2011, the doctors are testing him for a specific chronic degenerative condition known as Juvenile Neuroaxonal Dystrophy. Prior to the MRI, he was normal and reached all of his developmental milestones.

As a result of this life threatening condition, it has left him with multiple impairments, which include lack of mobility and lack of fine and gross motor skills. He is not able to walk, stand or maintain any balance. He has a speech impairment, considered legally blind, and developmentally disabled. Tyler’s weak muscles in his esophagus has resulted on him being fed through a feeding tube due to swallowing difficulties. If this diagnosis is confirmed, they are giving him a life expectancy of age 10. This condition is not reversible and currently there is no treatment plan available.

Currently, Tyler’s mother is a single parent and is in need of a minivan to accommodate his new delivered wheel chair and other adaptive equipment to get him to his doctor’s appointments. The demands of his care have caused financial hardship.

Paragon Properties’ goal is to raise money for Tyler Ruffin to cover the cost of genetic testing that is not covered by Medicaid and provide funding for his medical needs and adaptive equipment. It will match whatever is donated to Team Paragon and raised at Make-A-Wish Foundations’ Walk for Wishes at the Detroit Zoo on Saturday, May 5, to Tyler’s charity, the Tyler Ruffin Charity Hope Fund. Donations made to Team Paragon are also welcome at any Paragon Properties communities.

For more information, call 734-422-5411.

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