Andrew Little, the Fairfield Twp. boy who last year wished for enough Christmas Cards to decorate his room and received an estimated 50,000 of them, is enjoying many happy returns. So are his cousins.
“He is doing great. He is doing very well,” his grandmother, Alyson Little, said. “He’s a thriving 9-year-old, and very inquisitive.”
Little lives at St. Joseph Home in Sharonville, where he receives specialized medical care. He has been paralyzed from the neck down since about 15 months old, when he contracted a rapid onset of transverse myelitis, a swelling of the spinal cord.
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His grandmother last year spent $30 of the remaining $35 in her checking account to make an online request for cards, after he received only four the prior year. Then cards and packages arrived from around the globe.
“That was a big deal for him,” she said.
Andrew, who attends Evendale Elementary School, became ill around Christmas last year and remained sick until early in the summer, she said.
“It really made his Christmas last year a little bit brighter, even though he really wasn’t on top of the world,” she said.
“I saved a whole bunch of them, I mean thousands and thousands of them. And we read them all summer long. It’s kind of like all our holiday decorations at our new house are his cards. But his cousins, and his big sister, they get the biggest kick out of it. They think he’s a little celebrity, and I’m like, ‘Hmm, let’s not give him a big head.’”
Alyson Little since has moved to Oakwood, Ga., while Andrew remains in Ohio until the family can find a facility down there and make arrangements there. She plans to visit Andrew in the next few days.
Alyson Little plans to take other grandchildren — Andrew’s 5- and 7-year-old cousins — to visit him in coming days, “and we’re going to open up cards together as a family. Because he’s gotten a few — not like last year, but he’s gotten a few — so I’m keeping them all compiled together.”
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His cousins “make a big deal of it, because they’re just learning to read. They’re wild and crazy kids, and they think it’s fun to read all the cards,” Alyson Little said.
“Every afternoon, I pick the grandkids up, and every day: ‘Does Andrew have any cards?’ And they get the biggest thrill out of it,” she said.
Andrew “wants to go see Star Wars,” she said. “He’s an avid Star Wars fan. He wants some video games — a typical 9-year-old’s wants. He hasn’t asked for any large amounts of cards this year.”
He recently met some Bengals, including A.J. Green and Andy Dalton. His long-time favorite player, Andrew Whitworth (because they share a first name), no longer is with the team.
“He’s doing very, very well,” Alyson Little said. “Phenomenal. It goes to show, you’re only limited by your imagination.”
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