Parker Crawford of Sylacauga has shown himself to be a fighter every day since he was born in May 1999. Prenatal testing revealed some abnormalities in his facial structure so his mother, Lisa, was not surprised when Parker was transferred to the Children’s of Alabama Neonatal Intensive Care Unit just two days after being born by emergency Caesarean section at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
Parker’s ears and nose are affected by what Lisa described as an unknown facial disorder. The malformation interferes with his ability to breathe, swallow and eat. “He didn’t even take a pacifier when he was a baby,” she said. “He had a feeding tube until he was 13.”
Throughout his life, Parker has received treatment at Children’s by specialists in gastroenterology, ear-nose-and-throat, immunology, pulmonology and dentistry. He has undergone 40 surgeries and may need more in the future.
But the young man hasn’t let any of that interfere with his schoolwork or his plans for the future. He earns good grades in his classes at the Alabama Institute of Deaf and Blind and hopes to one day become a film maker. If he is successful in raising funds to purchase a camera, he plans to produce a video of his life story. Parker is also active in his church, enjoys spending time with the family’s pets, loves to play on the iPad and is in the process of adopting a basset hound.