#SavingEliza: Viral video could save SC girl's life

#SavingEliza: Viral video could save SC girl's life

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#SavingEliza: Viral video could save SC girl's life

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by ELIZABETH THOMAS / WCNC.com

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WCNC.com

Posted on April 21, 2014 at 12:32 PM

Updated Monday, Apr 21 at 12:39 PM

COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The family of a young South Carolina girl who was diagnosed with a rare, terminal genetic disorder last year has created a viral video that they hope will save her life.

Eliza O'Neill, a bubbly-4-year-old girl, was diagnosed with Sanfilippo Syndrome-Type A in July of 2013. Sanfilippo Syndrome is a disease that destroys brain cells and kills its young victims before they are out of their teens.

Eliza's parents, Glenn and Cara, commissioned the help of Canadian videographer Benjamin Von Wong to create a video they hope will save the girl's life.

The video aims to earn donations for a clinical trial at a Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. According to The Today Show, the researchers were ready to start testing the therapy in children, but needed to raise $2.5 million to put together the clinical trial because the Sanfilippo disease is so rare, no drug companies were willing to sign on to fund the trial.

After googling "how to make a viral video", the O'Neills turned to Von Wong, whose team spent eight days documenting the family's story.

On the video, a teary Glenn says of Sanfilippo syndrome, "You know where it's headed, it's headed toward suffering, it's headed toward pain for her. And as a father, you want to be able to protect your children."

Though researchers believe Eliza would qualify for the trial, it's not a guarantee Eliza will get help, even if the O'Neill family reaches their fundraising goals.

Watch the video below:

On a mobile device? Click here to watch.


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WLTX and The Today Show contributed to this report.

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