MOTHER OF DISABLED CHILD: 'Don't throw them to the side' - KXXV Central Texas News Now

MOTHER OF DISABLED CHILD: 'Don't throw them to the side because there's help out there'


You've probably heard of cerebral palsy before, but maybe you haven't heard it's the most common motor disability for children. That's according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The disability affects each child differently. It threatened to devastate the lives of one Central Texas family. That didn't happen, though, because of advanced technology and thoughtful prayer.

They say it takes a village to raise a child. That saying couldn't be more true for the Burks.

"A lot of prayer and a lot of support. I have a lot of support," Latricia Burks said.

Latricia and Aaron Burks said they continue to need that prayer and support for their son Jacoby.

"So the journey hasn't been easy but it hasn't been hard either," Latricia said.

The journey began when Latricia was giving birth to Jacoby in the hospital.

"I suffered from a high-spinal epidural, which was given to me in the the wrong spot on my back, and it caused me to go in a coma. He was inside me for an hour without oxygen," Latricia said.

Doctors told the Burks that might affect Jacoby.

"Whatever the situation was going to be, I was going to step to the challenge of what it was going to be," Aaron said.

They would not know what the challenge would be until three years later. It was cerebral palsy that took away Jacoby's ability to walk and talk.

"Mind-wise he understands everything. He understands what we're talking about right now," Aaron said.

He does understand and thanks to technology, the Tobii Dynavox, and his aide, Teannah Shields, he does have a voice.

"It's rewarding because I feel like I can speak for those that don't have a voice," Shield said.

Jacoby just has to look at and focus on the word he wants to say on the Tobii Dynavox.

"It was a little shocking and because I'm so sensitive. I cried because he really wants to talk, he wants to be heard and that has been his help," Latricia said.

To get that help from technology, all the Burks had to do was apply for a grant.

"So, it's out there and people just don't know that," Latricia said.

As his parents, his siblings and his aid continue to raise Jacoby, they have a message for the village at large.

"I just want everyone who has a child with a disability, don't give up on your child, don't throw them away, don't throw them to the side because there's help out there," Latricia said.

Jacoby has a very special occasion coming up that News Channel 25 will be there for. That will happen Wed. March 15.

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