OKLAHOMA CITY — Cases of West Nile continue to multiply in the Sooner State with more than 30 Oklahomans suffering from the virus so far this year.
Among the many cases is one of a 12-year-old girl who was already on immune suppressant medication for a skin condition and is also allergic to some antibiotics.
This made treating the preteen an up hill battle.
Sherry Fulton said, “My nickname for her is Sunshine because she’s a social butterfly. She loves to meet people and sing.”
April traveled to Texas with her family on a mission trip.
But the bright-eyed 12-year-old’s demeanor changed in an instant.
“When we left Texas she could get out of the car and still talk to me but when we got back to Oklahoma she couldn’t answer me and couldn’t walk,” says Fulton.
Sherry rushed her daughter to the hospital at 2 a.m. with a 103.3 temperature.
April said, “I remember having really bad headaches and my back hurting really bad and my legs being itching.”
Everything else is a blur.
At first, doctors thought she had Rocky Mountain Tick Fever, then Meningitis then Encephalitis but ultimately it was West Nile.
“We were scared, just horrified because there’s nothing you can do you just have to trust that God’s in control.”
She’s been in the hospital since August 1st.
Her mother has been by her side the entire time and hasn’t been able to work.
The church family they spend so much time serving now wants to serve them.
Pastor Ryan Abernathy, of West Metro Church, says, “What we want to be able to do as a church is to be able to say we love you, we value what you’ve done as a missionary trying to serve Jesus so we want to be able to help you out financially.”
April is walking and talking again and refuses to let anything get her off track of good deeds.
She says, “I’m going to stay on that path, that path of serving. That’s what you got to keep on doing.”
And when you look at her smile, it’s obvious why her mother calls her Sunshine.
Close friends believe all the medical expenses could bankrupt the family.
An account has been set up called Praying for April.
You can donate on the church’s website at westmetro.org. It is tax detectable.