Local lad is Variety telethon’s featured child
As you read this, Bronson Sens is likely getting ready to pack his suitcase for a flight to Vancouver this weekend.
Bronson, 10, and his brother Cooper, 8, are pretty excited about the trip, said their mom, Kim Becker, even though it’s just less than an hour up in the air to arrive for his moment as the featured child on the weekend’s Show of Hearts telethon.
Getting to this point, however, has been seven years of hard work.
When Bronson was just three, he came down with what his mom thought was the flu.
The doctors thought so, too, but, within days, he was falling down and saying his legs felt like they were broken.
The family lived in Pinantan at the time and Kim said by the time they got their boy to Royal Inland Hospital, he had lost his motor skills.
That flu-like illness Bronson had was actually encephalitis and, by the time it had run its course, Bronson not only lost his motor skills, he almost died.
That’s when Variety-The Children’s Charity stepped in.
“When he got well, instantly they were right on me,” Kim said, ensuring she had support, referrals to wherever she and Bronson needed to go and, most importantly, the equipment he would need to get on with his life.
That has included a wheelchair and power chair, a walker, a bicycle and so much more.
Variety’s support of her and Cooper was also invaluable because, Kim said, there were many days when she wondered, “Why me? Why me? I was afraid to take him home from the hospital even, but then you realize you have to suck it up and do this for him.
“So, the goal is to make him as independent as possible.”
Some of Bronson’s motor abilities returned; he can get by with a walker and there are railings on all the walls at home to help him, but his muscles are still developing and learning to cope with the legacy of the disease.
Bronson has fallen a lot — he has a chipped tooth to prove it — but he always gets right back up again.
“He’s a redhead,” Kim said, “so he has a little bit of fire in him.”
Both boys attend Parkcrest elementary and everyone was thrilled when people from the Global television network — which will air the telethon on Saturday, Feb. 16, and Sunday, Feb. 17 — arrived to do an interview.
“The school is great. Everywhere we’ve gone, people are so good,” Kim said.
The telethon starts at 7 p.m. on Saturday and continues to 6 p.m. on Sunday.
To donate, go online to variety.bc.ca and follow the links.