Siouxlanders host fundraiser to support family fighting child's rare lung disease
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KTIV) -
Jack Miltenberger was born on September 7, 20-13 to parents Ben and Erin, and older brother Cale. He was 16 weeks early, weighing just one pound, eight ounces.
"Jack was born very early. He's been in the hospital his whole life," Erin Miltenberger, Jack's mother said.
Jack was born with Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia, a rare chronic lung disease.
Jack was recently transferred to Columbus, Ohio to treat ongoing lung complications.
"We're trying to go out there every other week. Flying out, you know it's July, August, and June. They're pretty expensive flights. When we first started going out, it's almost doubled since then," Ben Miltenberger, Jack's father said.
Travel costs, medical costs, and the exhaustion that goes along with being in Ohio as often as possible has put a strain on the Miltenberger family, a strain their friends and family are doing everything they can to ease.
"If your child is in the hospital, there are a lot of medical bills and travel expenses. We just thought if we could do anything, we should step up to the plate," Sue McWilliams, friend of the Miltenbergers said.
"I just want them to be able to be with him as much as they possibly can. I can't even imagine leaving and not bringing him home," Rhonda Kooiman, Neighbor of the Miltenbergers said.
Friends and family hosted a spaghetti feed, silent auction, and raffle for the Miltenbergers, to help offset travel costs and medical bills.
Those in attendance said they were so glad for the opportunity to help the Miltenbergers fight back against Jack's condition.
"Baby Jack has just been in our prayers daily, so we've all decided to come and support them, support the family," Rhonda Kooiman, Neighbor of the Miltenbergers.
And the Miltenberger's say it means the world.
"I just hope that everybody who's come out and everybody who's donated things know how much we really appreciate everything that they've done," Erin said.
Donations are still being accepted at Security National Bank, under the Miltenberger Benefit Account.