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Five mile walk/run/rollerblade Saturday raising funds for food alert dog

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BRASHER FALLS - A special 5.1 mile walk/run/roller blade will be held starting at 10 a.m. Saturday at North Country Dairy in North Lawrence and ending with lunch at the Riverview in Brasher Falls.

The event will raise money for Rudi, a food alert dog who helps a local youth who is allergic to nuts.

Every participant will receive a T-shirt and lunch from Riverview. The T-shirts were paid for by local businesses and organizations - Tri-Town IGA, the American Legion, its Auxiliary and Sons of the Legion, The Jug, Pit Stop Bar, Jelly Beans Campground and High Peaks Winery.

The following submitted article shares the story of Rudi and 12-year-old Carter:

Rudi is a beautiful Raven girl who is being trained to detect peanuts and some tree nuts. She is part of a high school scholarship program so she is also learning social skills needed that only a teen can provide. Rudi has been paired with 12 year old Carter.

Carter’s allergic disease began when he was an infant. He always had sensitive skin that would react to high acid foods. At 7 months old he had his first major reaction.

From his dad’s eyes:

“I was doing what dad’s do best on Sunday afternoon. I was watching football and eating some dry roasted peanuts. Carter crawled over to me on his hands and knees, shirtless in just a diaper. I picked him up and sat him on my lap. A few moments later I noticed his skin was very red. I looked him over and noticed he had two welted hand prints on his skin. There was one on each side of his body from where I picked him up. I would not have known what it was from, if it was not for all 10 of my fingers being visible on his body. “

A few months later when his mom tried to feed him a peanut butter and fluff sandwich his face swelled up, he was covered in hives and almost unrecognizable. Treatment was given with little advice. Two years later he was accidently given a cookie with an M&M on it starting a major reaction. He was given Benadryl and an Epi Jr.

“We assumed the Epi would do its job and everything would be fine. After a few minutes, we noticed that he was getting much worse. The ambulance can take more than an hour to arrive. At that point I decided to drive him to the hospital myself. I loaded him up and headed out. Carter’s car seat was in the back seat. As I looked in the rearview mirror I could see his eyes roll back in his head and his lids close. I yelled at him, “Carter you have to stay awake for me buddy.” He replied with ‘ok daddy’ and as he said it, his eyes rolled back in his head again and his head slumped down. Carter and I must have repeated this process maybe a dozen times. Sixteen miles in eleven minutes, I was scared; I was watching my son die. The triage nurse saw the look on my face and Carter slumped in my arms. They put oxygen and gave him an adult Epi-pen. They put an oxygen monitor on him, and at this point his oxygen level had dropped to 67 percent. You could see the fear on the faces of doctor and nurses as they worked on him. They thought he was going to die too.”

“Carter opened his eyes again and started to rebound. Doctors explained how lucky we were as they gathered around him smiling with relief. The ER doc gave me some good counsel … he also told me there is no way to tell how bad his next reaction will be.”

Since this time, Carter has had multiple reactions even with his dad and mom keeping an ever vigilant eye on him. This includes smaller skin reactions with virtually no good reason for the reaction: standing in line at a store, the kind touch of a friend, and recently from shampoo.

“Every time he gets a hive our hearts sink and we remember …. He almost lost his life.”

Carter is beginning a new chapter in his life. He is going into the seventh grade and will be beginning his teenage years. With Rudi, Carter can better manage when his allergens are present. This peace of mind will allow him to go to friend’s homes, birthday parties, and as he becomes a young man, start dating.

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