Disease changes Fresno toddler’s life overnight, family says

FRESNO (KSEE) — One Fresno 4-year-old is celebrating a birthday today; at one time, his family didn’t know if he’d live to see this birthday.

According to hospital discharge papers, Andre Carson was diagnosed with Acute Encephalopathy, or brain inflammation, back in March.

Medical professionals say it’s rare.

Instagram videos showing then 3-year-old Andre Carson shooting hoops.

Fitting. He and his family are Golden State Warriors fans.

But one night in March, that all changed, after Kamareia Parrish says, she took her son to the doctor with flu-like symptoms.

“The next night we went to bed, and I woke up, and he wasn’t responding to me,” Parrish said.

Parrish says, the toddler’s body went limp when she tried standing him up.

“You go to bed one night, he’s fine, and then you wake up to a life-changing story,” Andre’s grandmother Rene Parrish said.

Parrish says, a CAT scan revealed brain lesions.

Their fourth day in the hospital, Parrish says, she had little hope.

“I went into the chapel, and I screamed,” Parrish said. “And I was angry with God.”

But even so, the family says little Andre, turned around, eventually going into therapy programs.

Today, he’s in a wheelchair, moving only his arms and legs. He’s fed through a tube at home by his family, and a nurse, who comes by four days a week.

Parrish says, her son’s been accepted into another rehabilitation program, which insurance won’t cover.

She’s also unable to work, tending to her son after moving back in with her mom.

“I try and stay in the present and not look at the what-if’s,” Parrish said. “And, just, God, prayer.”

Andre’s grandmother says, it’s been tough, but says, she supports her family.

“Nothing can bother me, I’m, I, have peace,” Parrish said. “Andre survived.

“He was only given a 30% chance to live; he’s a blessing.”

Reporting in Fresno, Megan Rupe.

The family’s started a GoFundMe account at:



Click here to download the new-and-improved 8News App

Never miss another Facebook post from 8News

Find 8News on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram; send your news tips to iReport8@wric.com.