Adams County boy raising money and awareness for rare disease

Posted at 8:47 AM, Jul 01, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-01 10:47:11-04

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    ADAMS COUNTY, Pa. (WPMT) — An Adams County boy is on a mission to raise money and spread awareness about a rare illness.

Spending time with family, and holding his dog Bentley Josh Shorb may seem like your average 10-year-old boy.

“There’s so many uncertainties,” said Stacey Shorb, Josh’s father. “We just have to pay very close attention to his activity, to any illness, anything.”

Josh at 3-years-old woke up with bloodshot eyes, rash on his cheeks, and a high fever. Doctors puzzled by what was happening, until he was diagnosed with Kawasaki disease. The disease was first described in 1967. It causes arteries, veins, and capillaries to become inflamed. If left untreated, it can lead to serious heart disease.

“His immune system isn’t taking over like it should,” said Joanna Shorb, Josh’s grandmother.

Now, Josh says, Kawasaki disease doesn’t really effect his day to day life. He just has to limit physical activity, and can’t play sports.

“Because he gets very flushed in the cheeks, he gets very overheated quickly,” said Stacey Shorb. “So, we just keep an eye on him.”

Wanting other people to know about Kawasaki disease, Josh began raising money for the American Heart Association. Over the last three years, Josh was bale to raise six thousand dollars.
“So, I want to give money back for research to figure out what causes it,” said Josh Shorb, diagnosed with Kawasaki disease at 3-years-old. “To help other kids with heart problems to get better.”

Josh and his family are hoping the money not only brings awareness to this diseases, but will help with research and finding a cure.

“It’s a fantastic feeling to see him at that young of an age want to give back and see other kids get help with whatever they have going on,” said Stacey Shorb. “It takes money like this for research and development to basically get things moving forward.”

Josh and his family tell FOX43 moving forward they won’t set fundraising goals, they just want to do what they can.

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