Separated From Every Single Person From Birth, This Boy Managed To Touch The World From A Plastic Bag
The story of David Phillip Vetter has been one that has pulled at the world's heartstrings for decades.
This young boy was separated from the entire world as soon as he was born, unable to touch or even feel the touch of a single person.
It is incredible was how this boy managed to remain strong throughout his life's seemingly unending torment..
David was born in 1971. Unfortunately, he had a rare condition, known as Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID), which meant even the slightest form of strains or bacteria could end his life.
His pre-planned solution, which was a bone marrow donation from his elder sister, Katherine, proved unhelpful as she was not a match.
And so, right from his birth, he had to spend every moment in a protective plastic bag.
Years went by, and no match was found for him and no other alternative treatment method was developed.
David had to grow up learning out of a classroom, playing without friends and feeling without being unable to touch.
He had help from several people and organizations, and one of which was the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. They built a special suit for him to move around, but this was not enough to make for what David was missing.
This courageous boy, however, managed to keep going every day, counting day to day with no new adventure, no new activities and everything he knew about the world being learned from a screen or a book.
He could not feel the most essential of things, such as a mother's kiss or a sister's hug. One can only but try to imagine what life felt like for David.
This young boy came to be deemed of 'national value' and caught the attention of the whole world. How he remained strong through it all was an inspiration to many.
And so, the day came on October 1993, after 12 years living in a plastic bag, David finally got his chance in the real world.
His doctor, William T. Shearer, along with many other specialists decided to try a new technique to give David a chance. It required a bone marrow transplant but this time it didn't need to match.
David and his family took the risk. He couldn't live like this forever and so his sister, Katherine, came forward one more time.
At first, it was all good and everyone, including David, thought he finally got his miracle, but things soon turned upside down.
Apparently, an unknown virus was present in his sister's bone marrow, Epstein-Barr, and it proved deadly for David. Within a short period, David was infected with several cancerous tumors and the ultimate price was inevitable.
On February 22, 1984, David finally passed away after a life of fighting, despite being separated from the whole world.
In his last moments, he finally got a little of what he always wanted which was physical touch and time with his loved ones, even though it still could make up for everything he had been unable to experince.
David didn't die in vain. His life served as a stepping stone in science and treating SCID. His case has been a reference which has helped to successfully treat other cases of SCID.
Till date, David Phillip Vetter remains relevant, and the story of 'the young man who moved the world from a plastic bag' will forever be told.