Sunday, June 1, 2008

Lorenzo's Oil Provided Reason For Hope

I FIRST "met" Lorenzo Odone aboard a passenger-car ship travelling between Yarmouth, Nova Scotia and Maine in 1993.
Actually, the introduction was through an on-board movie called Lorenzo's Oil and since then I have followed the often-trying journey of Augusto and Michaela Odone's son from that stormy night until Friday when he died in his sleep at age 30.
While I have written countless times about my mother, Anne Corbett, and her divine healing from multiple sclerosis, I had never written about Lorenzo and the perserverance of his parents until now.
Lorenzo had been a normal boy in the early stages of his life as the Odones lived in the Comoros Islands in East Africa. Then there was a dramatic change, for he was diagnosed with Adrenoleukodystrophy (ALD) in 1984.
In checking with a medical profile of ALD it is described as "one of a group of genetic disorders called the leukodystrophies that can cause damage to the myelin sheath, an insulating membrane that surrounds nerve cells in the brain."
The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Strokes, 2007, also detailed common symptoms include "visual loss, learning disabilities, seizure, poorly articulated speech, difficulty swallowing, deafness, disturbances of gait and coordination, fatigue, intermittent vomiting, increased skin pigmentation, and progressive dement"ia.
The life expectancy was minimal, however, his parents were not about to give up on their son. Augusto Odone was determined in finding a cure for Adrenoleukodystrophy.
Finally, through experimentation, Odone "discovered" Lorenzo's Oil, which combined erucic acid from rapeseed oil and oleic acid from olive oil in combatting "the Very Long Chain Fatty Acids C-24-C26."
Of course, this father's methods were scoffed at, but it gave renewed hope where there had only been despair.
Augusto Odone went on to found The Myelin Project, which is dedicated to eliminating such diseases as ALD and Multiple Sclerosis.
The 1992 movie, Lorenzo's Oil, which starred Nick Nolte and Susan Sarandon, opened the door for a possible cure to this horrific malady, however, there is still much research to be done to eliminate it.
Incidentally, the controversial Sarandon has become a spokesperson for the Myelin Project.
When the mute, deaf and blind Lorenzo died a few days in Fairfax, Va., his father, Augusto, was by his side along with long-time friend, Omouri Hassane. Lorenzo's mother, Michaela, died in 2000 of lung cancer.
While writing about Lorenzo's Oil, I would remiss in not mentioning my mother's "miracle," from Multiple Sclerosis.
In her own words in an upcoming book, she described vividly about the "miracle," which occurred at 10 a.m. on Jan. 27, 1951:
"Put on your shoes," these words tenderly, yet forcefully spoken penetrated the four walls of the bedroom.
It couldn't be her husband speaking; already he and his father had been at work in the chair factory the past three hours, her son was at school and in the distance she could hear the musical clatter of dishes being washed by her mother-in-law as she tidied her suite.
Urged on by an inner force, Anne obeyed.
Taking her cane in hand she reached into the inner recesses of the closet, hooked the gold-tipped crook into the toe of the military oxford that had not been worn for so long, brought forth a pair of shoes and proceeded to put them on her feet, not knowing why she felt compelled to do this.
"Walk to the kitchen" spoke the "Voice" again.
She couldn't -- Anne couldn't walk!
These legs that had been practically useless for years could not walk!
"Walk to the kitchen!""I can't walk, I can't walk," sobbed Anne.
The third time the voice spoke, Anne replied, "All right, Lord, I'll walk to the kitchen."
Only as she recognized that the Lord was speaking, could the miracle happen.
Immediately an unseen hand seemed to strike the top of her head and warm, yes, even a hot mercury-like ball streamed and penetrated to the very nerve endings of every part of her body.
She walked, once, twice, three times to the kitchen and back.
Then she ran through the kitchen, the living room, to the next suite into the arms of her mother-in-law.
Tears flowed.
A miracle had been performed that day."


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home