Community pulls together for young girl with unique disease

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Updated: 11/04/2012 6:59 pm
Although she is only four years old, Savanna Payne has lived a life different from most.

She has Angelman Syndrome, which keeps her in a wheelchair, but not walking hasn't slowed her down. Her passion for being in the water has her using her legs in a different way, so the Make-A-Wish Foundation decided to help her out by giving her a brand new hot tub.

"She has been through a lot, and I haven't been able to give her everything that she deserved," Savanna's mother Karisa said. "Having Make-A-Wish donate this spa and everything they've done for her has just really given her an opportunity to enjoy life outside of the medical part."

Karisa said the donation will bring Savanna more than just enjoyment.

"We're hoping that this is going to increase her ability to build her muscle tone, and maybe use her AFO's more to maybe learn how to put her legs forward, and maybe learn to walk," Karisa said.

The disease also prevents Savanna from talking, but Karisa said the gesture is not lost on her.

"Her heart is telling everybody thank you," Karisa said. "Her heart is expressing her gratitude, and her excitement is showing how thankful she is to have such great friends and family and such great people in the community to be able to help her and to come for this great donation."

"It's just a great support system here in Ralls, and for Lubbock affiliate Make-A-Wish Foundation," Tammy Anderson, with the non-profit organization, said. "We just try to really work with the families and to help the situation to get the wish granted."

Although they can check Savanna's wish off their list, Anderson said they will continue to check in on Savanna, and will keep she and her family in their prayers.
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