Boxer Perozzi wants your support to help sick brother
Wednesday, May 23, 2007 9:43 AM
A little boy born with a curved spine has beaten the odds by reaching his tenth birthday.
The Bermuda Sun has been writing about Bermudian Mihdi Brock for years; most of the stories were designed to raise money to pay for treatment and expenses overseas.
Today, dad Marvin wants to thank everyone who has helped his son come this far, but the fight for a decent life continues.
Speaking from their home in Santa Monica, Mr. Brock said: "Each year on May 24, as the island commemorates Bermuda Day, Mihdi Brock celebrates his birthday; this year will be his tenth - each time another year and another milestone reached for a young boy who doctors didn't think would even reach this age."
Bermuda residents have donated tens of thousands of dollars over the years through the Mihdi Joon Fund - and it is has paid off - Mihdi has made remarkable progress. But his dad said he's now reached another crucial juncture.
"Recently, it has been seen that Mihdi's condition has somewhat worsened," he said, adding it requires the boy to have additional physical therapy sessions, which affects his study time.
Right now, his dad says he has to hold Mihdi in traction every four minutes when he is not in school or at the doctors.
He said: "Surgery is still not an option as Mihdi's internal systems are too weak for him to survive.
"While he has grown and put on some weight over the years, knowing that Mihdi's upper arm is only about the size of a grown man's wrist helps us to have a clearer picture of how frail his structure is. The therapy schedule must be continued and strictly adhered to; there is no alternative at this point."
His dad says Mihdi has dropped below grade level. Tutoring service Sylvan Learning has mapped out a 12-month intensive programme for Mihdi that should help bring him up to speed.
"Help in the way of financial assistance is urgently needed to provide for the tutoring, yoga and Tae Kwondo training that helps Mihdi," Mr. Brock said.
Mihdi's big sister boxer Teresa Perozzi [they share the same mom] is already on board. She's running the half-marathon tomorrow in aid of her brother and is asking for your support.
She told us: "I went to visit the family last month and got to see the doctor who has been working with Mihdi. He is quite a remarkable man and I got a good feel for how much he is helping my brother."
Miss Perozzi's own son is five weeks younger than Mihdi, but he weighs nearly twice the amount.
"My son is about 91lbs, Mihdi is about 43lbs," she said.
"Mentally, he is fine and he has a great spirit, but there are definitely physical limitations as to what he can do.
"After my visit I decided I wanted to become more involved in the fundraising."
Ms Perozzi, who is the North American Boxing Council Middleweight title-holder, can be reached on 799-0399.
Mihdi's story has been well documented. More info at: www.themihdijoonfund.org