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Liverpool family focusing on the positive

Benefit for Trayvon Curkendall

TIME: 6 to 8:30 p.m.

DATE: Saturday Sept. 11

PLACE: Caf (c) 407, 407 Tulip St. in Liverpool.

COST: $10 for individuals, $30 for families

Donations can be sent to: Benefit for Trayvon Curkendall, AmeriCU, 7474 Oswego Road, Liverpool, NY 13090.

Visit the family's blog at caringbridge.org/ny/my2angels.

Benefit for Liverpool boy will aid family during heart transplant

Eleven-year-old Trayvon Curkendall loves to play soccer and baseball. He's a video game fanatic and adores animals.

And when a heart becomes available, he will head to New York City to have a crucial transplant so someday he will be able to run and play something he's not able to do right now.

"One of the ventricles is missing," said Renee Curkendall, Tray's mom. "He's had three open heart surgeries to remediate the problem."

But, Tray's heart continues to weaken due to an arrhythmia that occurred two years ago.

"It's not going to get better. It's only going to get worse," Renee said. "Now is the time to move forward."

Despite a brave front, Tray admits he's a little scared of the pending surgery, which is not a procedure that can be planned out in advance. He's at the mercy of what happens, Renee said.

"[I'm] sort of scared, just to think about them taking my heart out," he said.

While there's some fear of the procedure, Tray is not going blindly into the transplant -- he attends Hope With Heart camp in New York City each summer, which was created for children with heart problems and there he's met several campers who've had transplants.

Some day, Tray would like to become a counselor at the camp in order to help other children like himself.

The Curkendall family, of Liverpool, includes not just Tray and Renee. There's also dad -- Peter -- and five other children; Annette, 20, Joshua, 14, Marriela, 7, Cody and Sergio, both 4. While four of the six children are adopted, together they've kept Renee and Peter on their toes, as five of the children are medically complex.

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