In November 2012 Luke Pickett was diagnosed with Allan Herndon Dudley Syndrome – a rare genetic disorder (estimated to occur in 1 in 250,000 children).
Five years ago, the Mexico community, with support of many friends and family members, raised funds to help Luke and his dad Clint spend 7 weeks in China for Luke's stem cell therapy – a kind of therapy not yet approved for use in the United States.
Chris Azdell and Rich Nowlin, owners of Brick City Customs, are lifelong friends of Clint Pickett. A poker run called "Luke's Ride" will be held Saturday, starting at Brick City Customs on East Liberty Street, to help raise funds for a van that will accommodate Luke's special equipment.
Luke's dad is a graduate of Mexico High School. Luke is the grandson of Mike and Kathy Pickett of Carrollton, formerly of Mexico. Clint Pickett will travel from Berryville, Virginia, to be in Mexico for the ride.
To manage Luke's condition, he will always require therapy. He currently receives physical, occupational and speech therapy. Depending on the time of year, he also has aqua therapy and his family hopes to get him into a therapeutic horseback riding program.
"Although Luke is unable to do all the things his peers can do, he loves to ride his adapted tricycle, swim and swing outside," said his mom Cheryl Pickett. "One of his favorite things to do is ride trails alongside his brother Cody, 7, and younger brother and sister, Ethan and Emily, who are 4 1/2," she added.
Donations may be sent to Azdell or Nowlin at Brick City Customs, 4780 E. Liberty, Mexico, MO 65265.