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Boy with rare genetic disorder prepares for 20th surgery, asks for community's help

SAN ANTONIO, TX - A child battling a rare genetic disorder needs your help, he's just 9-years-old and has had 19 surgeries.

It's called Treacher Collins Syndrome.

For anyone who has it, it means their facial bones are not fully developed.

Just under 20,000 people are born with it in the country.

For little Tonalli Espinoza and his family, they are asking for your help with his next facial reconstruction surgery.

Tonall is just like every other 9-year-old boy.

Except he definitely loves his stuffed dogs more than any other boy I've ever met.

The stuffed animals have kept him company during the 19 surgeries he's endured.

Most of which, to reconstruct his face.

"It was so hard, those kinds of surgeries, every moment," Tonalli's mother Connie said. "And every step that have to do something, we have to fight for that."

We first heard about Tonalli here.

At Taqueria Data Point on the city's Northwest side.

Where there's a small jar for dollars and change for his next surgery.

"Doing the fundraiser right now is amazing help," Connie said.

It pays for his procedures in Mexico.

Tonalli's mom said their insurance wouldn't cover the surgeries here in the states.

She said that's because his surgeries are seen as aesthetic by insurance and not medical.

Connie disagrees with the insurance.

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If you would like to help Tonalli, click here.

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