Meet this Dance Marathon superstar and "Riley Kid" for Life
My Riley story is a bit different from many others. I wasn't born prematurely, suddenly given a short amount of time to live, taken into emergency surgery or stuck in a hospital bed. I was a normal teenage boy who was healthy and well. A couple months before my first Riley visit, I was a part of the group who had won our mid-state conference for the 4 x 400 in in track.
One day, in July 2008, I woke up and I was unable to use my right arm. I went to the doctor, and they weren't sure what was wrong. A week later, I woke up and I was barely able to move my body. I had lost the ability to walk, and I couldn't crawl upstairs. I went to Riley Hospital a few weeks later for the first time. I was tested for just about every disease and problem in the book. Tests for lupus, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, and more all came back negative. I saw a rheumatologist (Dr. Thomas Klausmeier) and a neurologist there many times. Doctors determined that what I had was “muscle memory loss.” I endured nine months of physical therapy in order to walk again, and by the tenth month I was able to run again. The doctors at Riley did everything they could in order to help me, and I am proud to be a Riley Kid.
I have been healthy since April of 2009. I was able to run track and play soccer in high school, and now I am a coach for the Delaware County Futbol Club. I am currently a Ball State University student. Thanks to being well again, I’ve been able to study abroad in England, and travel around Europe.
I am actively involved with Riley as a Wish Granter for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, a three-time committee member for Ball State University Dance Marathon, a volunteer in the Child Life Zone at Riley Hospital for Children, and a volunteer for Camp Riley this summer. I have attended seven Dance Marathons (six college ones!) already this year, and I plan to attend at least thirty more within the next year, spending almost every weekend with some of the most inspirational people in the world.
One of my favorite things to do is hang out with all of the fellow Riley families throughout the year, and doing that would have never been possible without all of the great Dance Marathon Coordinators at Riley Children’s Foundation.
You can find me at your local Dance Marathon. I'll be rocking my RileyStrong wristband as always.
FTK (For The Kids)!
Click here to donate in support of Daniel’s Ball State University Dance Marathon fundraising efforts.
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