Josiah's Last Surgery

It’s Not Over Until the Bridge is Built

Hello everyone. I'd like you to meet my brother, Josiah.  Joe was born with a bilateral cleft lip and palate. He’s been through fourteen surgeries and thousands of dollars to achieve what most of us take for granted. Contrary to what many believe, a cleft lip and palate cannot be fixed “as if nothing happened” and there’s more than meets the eye.

When Joe was born, he had no roof in his mouth. His throat was also deformed. His teeth came in in every place but where they were supposed to be and his upper jaw was too small for his lower.

Years went by and after many procedures, including having his jaw broken and plates and screws put in, he has just one thing left. His four front teeth are falling out because there isn’t enough bone in his upper jaw to hold them in place. He needs a permanent bridge with four false teeth. He has been through a physical hell as doctors have worked to fix his face. 

Imagine looking at yourself in the mirror and having no front teeth and no way to pay for them. Joe is 22. There’s a reason he smiles with his mouth closed. He has a fulltime job but no dental insurance. He believes people perceive him as ugly. The fact is that he perceives himself that way. He also believes no woman would ever be interested in him because of his birth defects and all that could mean in the future.

This is not about raising money for cancer, or paralysis, or some dreaded disease. Most of us will not experience those things but we all face whether or not we have teeth to chew, smile and talk. And at 22, most of us would have been horrified not to have front teeth – especially when we did nothing wrong to lose them.

My mom is doing all she can to gather up money for Joe’s last fix for his cleft lip and palate. It’s not over until he has a permanent bridge with four false teeth. Will you please help my brother achieve what all of us would want for ourselves and our children or grandchildren?

Thank you for reading this and considering donating. Your generosity could put the smiles of a life time on a young man’s face - who has fought hard to get this far.
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Organizer

Nikki Rogers 
Organizer
Webster, NY
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