Pancakes for Tristan

Local groups chipping in to help family with revolutionary bed

For David Knapp-Fisher, not paying the $31,500 for a bed his son needed was never an option.

His son Tristan, who has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, needs to be turned from one side to the other multiple times in the night. After Tristan had surgery last year, Knapp-Fisher and his wife Paula were waking up 10 times a night.

“There was no quality of life for anyone,” he said.

Then he heard about the Freedom Bed, a computer-controlled therapy bed which automatically rolls the sleeper every 45 minutes.

He put the whole amount on his credit card and line of credit, and doesn’t regret it.

“We had to make a decision here — either spend the money to get our life back, or never sleep again.”

Now, he said, they only have to wake up twice a night. Tristan can also turn the bed himself by pressing a button.

He used savings to pay the credit card bill, but the family has been seeking donations to recoup the money.

CFAX Santas Anonymous and Help Fill a Dream jointly chipped in $18,500.

To try and raise more of the money, Flader Hale Hughesman chartered accountants in Sidney are holding a pancake breakfast on Aug. 26.

This is the second year the firm has hosted a charity breakfast. Last year’s event raised money for a Sidney boy named Eathn Gregory, who has a type of kidney cancer called Wilms Tumour.

Elaine Hughesman said 200 people attended last year’s breakfast, which raised $5,400.

She’s expecting a bigger turnout and to raise more money than last year.

Based on Hughesman’s estimates, Knapp-Fisher estimates he’ll only be $7,000 short, an amount he said he can manage.

“There’s so much need it’s hard to get (help). We’re so grateful these folks saw value in what we’re trying to do for our son,” he said.

The pancake breakfast will be held Aug. 26 in the Flader Hale Hughesman parking lot, 9768 Third St. from 8 a.m. to10 a.m.