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Norwich fifth grader in need of kidney transplant

NORWICH, N.Y. (WBNG) — Joella and Harold Cole’s 11-year-old son Gavin was recently diagnosed with stage 4 chronic kidney disease. Now they are doing all they can to help him, but it’s taking a toll on the family emotionally, physically and financially.

“We went to the doctor, because Gavin was showing some puffy eyes and getting some headaches,” explained Harold Cole.

After blood test results came back abnormal, the fifth-grader was taken to Golisano Children’s Hospital in Syracuse where he was told both of his kidneys are failing.

“We kind of felt something was wrong,” said Harold Cole.

“I was scared as a mom,” exclaimed Joella Cole. “You want to protect your kids and want to know they’re okay.”

Joella Cole left her job to be home while her son’s at school.

“In case he needs me throughout the day I need to be able to be there,” explained Joella Cole.

With Harold Cole, a veteran, providing the only source of income in the household, he took GoFundMe.

You can help by heading to a GoFundMe page that was created by the family to cover expenses associated with Gavin’s fight.

Gavin’s blood type is A positive.

Gavin, who has a younger and older brother, suffers from high blood pressure and low protein levels. Once those levels improve, he’ll be able to start dialysis. The family drives up to Syracuse weekly for checkups, and the traveling costs are adding up.

“His blood pressure is a lot higher than a normal child should be,” explained Harold Cole.

While the family said Gavin has always been healthy, doctors told them this could have been developing for years. They hope their story can help other families recognize any abnormalities in their children early.

The Cole’s said their son is on a state kidney transplant list, and they’ll be taking him to Philadelphia in the next few weeks to get a second opinion on his diagnosis.

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Michael Schwartz

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