MCKINNEY, Texas - A McKinney family adopted a toddler out of foster care knowing he would one day need a lifesaving liver transplant. But they had no idea that day would come so soon.
Fortunately, they're not alone in preparing for the long road ahead.
The family opened their hearts and lives to a child in need. Now, a national organization and their own McKinney community is showing them love when they need it most.
Chris and Chrystal Wilcox are high school sweethearts who beat the odds. Their family breaks the mold too. They have four biological children, a daughter adopted out of foster care and their 16-month-old son, Clark Wilcox.
Clark is a foster child who came from an abusive home at 6 weeks old. They formally adopted him in August, knowing he has a genetic disorder damaging his liver.
“We stepped forward and just said that we would be happy to take him on and love him forever,” Chrystal said.
Clark currently needs a feeding tube. His face is allergic to the adhesive. They knew one day he'd need a liver transplant. Then, word came that he needed it sooner rather than later. He recently joined the transplant list.
While they wait, they connected with the Children's Organ Transplant Association which shepherds families through the fundraising process for transplant-related expenses beyond what insurance covers. Those expenses often stretch into the tens of thousands of dollars.
“It’s super important,” said COTA liaison Misti Walton. “I don’t want them to be worried about that when they really could just be concerned with taking care of him.”
Walton, their dear friend stepped up as their COTA liaison and fundraising point woman. They can use that money for anything that they need during the time of the transplant and for the rest of Clark’s life too.
For the Wilcox family, it’s a financial safety net that means they can focus on being loving parents and giving Clark the loving home and chance at life he deserves.
COTA's first fundraiser for Clark is a pancake breakfast coming up on Feb. 8 at Pin Oaks Christian Fellowship in Anna. Several other events are also in the works.