Scottsdale nonprofit pays to fly Phoenix boy to New Orleans to save his life
MESA, AZ — Kayden Noe, a 3 year old boy from Mesa, is fighting for his life after falling ill with croup and then falling into a coma.
"He was always a happy boy and to see him like this, it breaks my heart. It's the worst thing anyone could ever go through", says Kayden's mother Toni-Lynn Noe.
Doctors told the Noe family that Kayden would never "walk, talk or be Kayden again," says Toni-Lynn.
Kayden was first admitted to Cardon Children's Hospital in Mesa then later transferred to Phoenix Children's in Phoenix. "The doctors here don't give Kayden much hope. So Dr. Harch is pretty much his only hope for making a full recovery," says Toni-Lynn.
Dr. Paul Harch specializes in hyperbaric therapy - a treatment that combines oxygen and pressure to aid the body's natural healing process.
Unfortunately, Dr. Harch was not only miles away in New Orleans, but $20,000 away in cost for transportation. Meantime, the cost of treatment alone is $10,000 not including other necessities for the family like a place to stay in Louisiana.
In hopes to raise enough money, the family started a fundraiser on Facebook. "Right now, with how the fundraiser is, it would only cover one thing and not the other so it is bittersweet," says Toni-Lynn.
Until an ABC15 viewer stepped up with a lifesaving opportunity. TJ Millington saw ABC15's initial story about the Noe family and jumped into action. "I started calling friends and family... and we were able to put this together within 12 hours," says Millington.
Millington connected the Noe's with Wings of Humanity, a non-profit that provides medical transportation. "Our motto is, 'Saving children's lives... one flight at a time,' but really it should be saving families because when a child is sick it affects the entire family," says Wings of Humanity CEO Stan Strom.
Wings of Humanity provided everything needed to transport the Noe family from Phoenix to New Orleans including the flight and ground transportation. The fuel for the plane was donated by Air 7, an aircraft charter management company based out of California.
The plane flew from Scottsdale to New Orleans at 27,000 feet instead of the typical 40,000 feet due to Kayden's condition. "We can do pretty much anything the hospital can do. We'll go pick Kayden up, get report from the nurses and continue his care until he gets to New Orleans," says in-flight nurse Alyssa Medeiros.
Kayden will spend the next two months in New Orleans undergoing a series of 40 treatments. "We want to get our story out there so everyone can see who our little boy was before and who he will be after", says Toni-Lynn.
If you would like to help Kayden and his family, they've now set up a Gofundme page here.