‘He has special muscles’

Published 8:58 pm Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Family fights for a cure

Less than a year ago, Logan Morean was at T-ball practice when both of his calves locked up. At the hospital later, he went to the bathroom, and his urine was the color of cola.

That was the beginning of a frightening roller coaster ride that has yet to end.

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“He’s doing all right,” said his mother, Amanda Morean. “He looks like a normal 5-year-old.”

In many ways, Logan is a normal 5-year-old. He spent a recent evening wrestling with his 10-year-old sister, Abigail, and running Hot Wheels cars down a track in their parents’ living room.

But unfortunately, that day when Logan’s calves locked up eventually led to a diagnosis of Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a rare disease that causes progressive wasting of the muscles, eventually including the heart and diaphragm.

Most with the disease are in a wheelchair by their preteen years, paralyzed by their mid-teens, and die, usually of heart failure or pneumonia, by their mid-20s.

“Being told you’re going to outlive your kid — I can’t even explain the feeling of when somebody says that to you,” Amanda Morean said.

Logan has been through a round of physical therapy and aquatic therapy and takes steroids to reduce the inflammation in his muscles. His legs must be stretched each day, and he wears braces at night to keep them stretched. It all seems to be helping so far.

“He can run and keep up with his friends,” Amanda Morean said. “We will do everything we can to give him the best quality of life we possibly can.”

The family has also jumped in to assist with fundraising in the hopes that a cure can be found.

They participated in the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s Muscle Walk last year as Team Logan Henry Strong.

“We had 40 people show up as team members,” Amanda Morean said. “Some people we didn’t even know. That was pretty awesome.”

This year, Logan is the local ambassador for the Muscle Walk. On March 18, he’ll get to ride the Zamboni at the Norfolk Admirals’ Blue and Gold Night for MDA.

“It will be good exposure,” Amanda Morean said.

Exposure is one thing Logan’s mom wants. She had never heard of Duchenne muscular dystrophy when Logan was diagnosed.

“I want people to know about the disease,” she said. She wants people to make sure to watch for the symptoms in their sons, including falling a lot, running slowly, large calves and leg cramps.

“People need to know,” she said. “People need to look for the signs.”

Logan’s father, Steven Morean, has a talented mother who has been knitting hats to raise money for the cause. “Nana’s Hats of Hope to End Duchenne” can be found on Facebook.

“She’ll make it any color you want, any design,” Amanda Morean said. The only stipulation is that it has to have lime green in it, because that’s the color of muscular dystrophy. The hats are sold for any amount of donation.

“There’s no cure for now,” Steven Morean said with a hopeful voice.

“We literally live life day to day with this diagnosis, because that’s all you can do,” Amanda Morean said. “The road will get a lot harder. But we have a huge support system of family and friends.”

For now, Logan has been told that he has “special muscles.” Abigail dotes on him and, while his parents don’t treat him any differently, he does get all the extra snuggles he wants.

“Those snuggles mean so much more now,” Amanda Morean said.

Visit tinyurl.com/loganhenrystrong for the team’s MDA fundraising page.