JACKSONVILLE, Fla.--- June 5 is likely a day Jennifer Greagor won't ever forget. That's the day she learned her son was diagnosed with a rare disease known as Acute Flaccid Myelitis. A disease that's bound her son Jack to a motorized scooter and ventilator 24/7.
While his classmates may run around the playground at Chimney Lakes Elementary, Jack Greagor flies.
“His legs hurt and 'I can’t walk, Mommy. Please carry me," said Jennifer Greagor.
That was June 4, 2016. Just one day after her son Jack said his legs suddenly hurt, she found herself in the emergency room.
“We ended up being there for seven weeks in the PICU, had to be intubated and has been on a ventilator ever since, 24/7,” Greagor said.
Turns out Jack was diagnosed with a rare disease known as Acute Flaccid Myelitis.
“It’s a mixture of an infectious process with a public health issue with a neuro-immune disorder," said Dr. Jose Irazuzta, University of Florida Professor.
The difficult part, Dr. Jose Irazuzta says, is doctors have yet to pinpoint how a child gets the disease. In simple terms, the signals sent from the brain along the spinal cord to the arms and legs are interrupted.
“We know it happens during a certain period of time.”
Dr. Irazuzta says cases appear to be more frequent August through October.
Greagor is asking all parents to pay attention when your child is sick and not just write it off as just a common cold.
“Within in a few days, if they start to say my arm hurts, my leg hurts, they start feeling tingles, take them to the doctor,” she warns.
Two years later, despite rehab four times a week, 5-year-old Jack is showing progress along with his smile.
“He can walk a couple steps which is huge. When we left Wolfson’s, he could wiggle a toe,” said Jack's mother.
The goal is to one day get Jack off his ventilator and instead of wiggling his toes to write, use them to walk.
“I have faith that my son is going to make it.," Greagor said.