by Colin McEwen
Stow -- Bruna Del Ferraro said her son's family has experienced miracles before. Now they need another one.
Bruna's 8-month-old grandson, Chase Del Ferraro, was born a triplet and has a rare liver disease called biliary atresia, she said.
Chase has been on the waiting list for a liver transplant since December at Cincinnati Children's Hospital, said his father, Michael. And while he is unsure when the call will come, Michael said the family is staying close to home and remaining optimistic.
He said this is not the first time his family has struggled with the health of a child.
The couple's 4-year-old daughter, Michela, was born premature at 24 weeks, weighing only 1 pound, said Michael.
He said Chase's two brothers, Mason and Parker, are healthy.
To support the family with their mounting medical bills and the cost of the transplant surgery, friends will host a fundraiser Feb. 3 at the Polish-American Club in Akron from 1 to 4 p.m.
The cost to attend is $5, which includes a hot dog, potato chips and a beverage.
There also will be a jewelry show and raffle drawing, sponsored by Judie Nervo and Premier Design Jewelry.
Bruna, who works at Woodland Elementary School, introduced Nervo to her son's family and she wanted to help.
"My wife and I are very grateful for the people who have put time into our family," said Michael. "There are a lot of people there for us, and we appreciate that."
Bruna said all of the proceeds from the fundraiser will benefit the Chase Del Ferraro Benefit Fund.
"A lot of people in the community have already shown their support," said Bruna, adding the fund has raised "less than $10,000."
Michael said he and his wife Jodi are grateful for the help they have received.
"This has been a blessing," he said. "A lot of people are stepping up and doing this for us -- people that we don't even know."
The couple has insurance, but with costs that could exceed more than $400,000, Michael said he is unsure how much will be covered by his insurance company.
"Our day-to-day isn't easy," he said. "It's hard enough raising three infants and a 4-year-old -- there's a lot more to it. Raising our kids is our primary concern."
Michael, an Akron resident and a 1996 Stow-Munroe Falls High School graduate, said having family live nearby helps.
"This has been rough and it will get harder before it gets easier," he said. "But we have a great support system."
Donations can made at National City Bank, care of the Chase Del Ferraro Benefit Fund.