Carlos Santos really doesn’t want any attention. Like most parents, for years the Margate finance manager and his wife have done everything they could for their daughter Sabrina, now a lovely young woman in her twenties. The complexity for the Santos family is that Sabrina was born with cystic fibrosis (CF), a progressive, genetic disease that causes persistent lung infections and limits the ability to breathe over time.
Considering the powerful challenges she has faced, Sabrina has lead a remarkably full life, even earning full scholarships to both Brown University and Boston College (which she attended). But the ravages of the disease have been an increasingly overpowering and malign influence on her young life. Because of the severity of her condition, Sabrina was placed on a list to receive a double lung transplant.
This month the Santos family received the call they had long awaited: a donor pair of lungs became available, and Sabrina was flown to the Cleveland Clinic for the long and difficult surgery. Although the procedure was considered a success, Sabrina is now fighting for life.
Carlos has asked only that people pray for his daughter; short of that, he asks that they send whatever love they can muster to Sabrina. He wants no other attention, and no donations.
In a season in which we dare to believe that a better world is possible, surely we can perform this small act for a father’s child?