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Friends Sponsor Softball Tourney to Help

A co-ed softball tournament will take place in Union County, Ky., on Aug. 29, at the Uniontown Ballpark to benefit a young lady with Multiple Sclerosis, in hopes that a treatment may change her life forever.

Kacey Davis-Leterski, a 2001 Union County High School graduate, has the opportunity to receive a stem-cell transplant in California.

MS is a disease of the brain and spinal cord in which your immune system attacks the protective sheath (myelin) that covers your nerves. Myelin damage disrupts communication between your brain and the rest of your body. Ultimately, the nerves themselves may deteriorate. In layman's terms, it's like a broken circuit; the brain cannot tell the leg to move.

"Yet with the stem cells, we hope they adhere to these damaged areas and repair them," said Leterski. "It's huge. I could put on my dancing shoes. I told my friends the first stop would be Holiday World, or maybe hiking. I can't imagine feeling like my old self. Tears fill my eyes just thinking of the possibilities. I use to take such simple things for granted. When you lose them, you realize they were never simple things at all, but blessings."

Leterski did not always have MS and has much in common with any young lady. She enjoyed her high school years. She loved music, dancing and just making people smile. Leterski was friends with everyone, a cut-up, a clown and a shoulder to lean.

"I was officially diagnosed in 2009 with multiple sclerosis," said Leterski. "At the time, I worked as a full time dental hygienist and had just began studying for my MPH. It was rough; it began with double vision and random numbness in my extremities."

MS is a tricky disease; one day you feel fine and the next day you may not get out of bed. "I began treatment at Vanderbilt," said Leterski. "It took a few years to figure out what medicine would work best for me. I continued therapy and worked as a dental hygienist for seven years. I absolutely loved my career choice. I thankfully worked with a dentist who was sympathetic to my needs. If I was having a bad day walking, she understood."

Leterski made the best of her situation, as she continued to pursue her love of dentistry. "It was great until my MS began to interfere with my hands and tactile abilities," said Leterski. "I mean do you want a hygienist with a numb hand giving you shots in your mouth? No." Leterski even taught her discipline until she was unable.

Lifelong friend and softball tournament organizer, Nicki Smith tries to be the shoulder for Leterski to cry on while not showing weakness. "There have been so many nights that I have prayed repetitively for God to be with Kacey and give her strength," said Smith. "I asked God to teach me how to be a better friend and show me how to stay strong for my best friend. I ask this all while my heart is aching for her, witnessing her disease progress and take control of her body. My mind consumes me of how I can help her. What can I do or say to make it better?"

Leterski has an extremely supportive husband. "Joel has liquidated his 401K to take me to California for this treatment," said Leterski. "He is the most selfless person I've ever known. It could not cover all the expenses. We have tried traditional treatments and they simply aren't working. I now walk like a toddler. Stem cell treatments are extremely advanced, expensive treatments."

Leterski and Smith refuse to give up and hold on to hope, despite the many hardships. "I thank God for modern medicine," said Leterski. "I now get my bladder botoxed every six months. I don't have to wear adult diapers anymore. I have to use catheters, but that is better than the alternative. I just thank God. True, my body betrayed me, but God never has."

Story Source: The above story is based on materials provided by SURFKEYNEWS
Note: Materials may be edited for content and length 

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