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Weston's Journey Around the Bases

Accepting defeat was never an option for Weston and his family.

All Weston needs is to get on base to potentially score the winning run. There he stands, with his bat ready and staring down the pitcher. The ball is pitched but Weston does not swing. Strike one.

He eyes the pitcher again, who then throws the next pitch. Only this time, the ball comes right down the middle and Weston goes for it. The crowd is silent and all that can be heard is the sound of the bat hitting the ball. Weston runs to first base as the ball makes its way into the outfield. The crowd goes wild. His parents, Matthew and Sherli, shout “Go Weston, go!” There was a time when Weston’s family believed he wouldn’t be able to run at all, but now they find themselves jumping and shouting with joy as they see him making his way towards first base.

Weston was a late walker and did not begin to take his first steps until he was 2. At an early age in Nashville, Tennessee, Weston was diagnosed with spastic cerebral palsy. During that time, providers treated his feet with serial casting. However, the treatments were unsuccessful. Weston’s family was eventually told that he would walk with abnormal legs and feet for the rest of his life. This news left the family feeling defeated. Fortunately, they would later find out that there was hope.

When Weston’s father, Matthew, approached his uncle, Bob, with this news, Matthew learned that there were connections with the Shriners and had heard that Shriners Children’s treats children with Weston’s condition. It was then that Shriners Children’s Southern California was contacted.

This was not an easy decision for Weston’s family. Weston’s father had just returned from active duty in Afghanistan, and was set to move up the ranks. But they knew they had to make the sacrifice by moving to California so that they could give Weston the best chance at a full life. A military family that has had to endure many moves, they packed up and left their lives behind.

Weston has always loved baseball! Thanks to Shriners Children's and the miracles Dr. Badkoobehi has made for my son, he has the ability to live a normal life, to play baseball and run without the worry of his condition.
Matthew, Weston's father

In 2018, 5-year-old Weston found himself meeting Haleh Badkoobehi, M.D., MPH, for the first time. Dr. Badkoobehi gave Weston’s parents the hope they needed by assuring them that he would be a stronger walker once his lower extremities were corrected. Weston was first treated with conservative methods such as botulinum toxin injections and serial casting, but would later need surgeries, as those methods were not effective. Fortunately, Weston would achieve what previous doctors hadn’t been able to accomplish: the ability to walk much better.

Weston is now 10 and has had multiple surgeries that include tendon transfers and hardware insertion in his hips. In all this time, Weston has been able to become more and more active, and is even able to keep up with other kids when running around. He is a huge Los Angeles Dodgers fan and attends many games. He is also playing Little League® Baseball for the first time.

After this long journey and sacrifices made by his family, and with the help of the talented staff at Shriners Children’s Southern California, Weston now finds himself rounding bases on that baseball diamond as his family cheers from the stands.

Weston's Journey

From being a late walker to now running the bases, Weston proves he can do anything he sets his mind to.

Weston playing at playground

Weston playing at the park

Uncle Bob, Weston and father, father holding Dodgers pennant, with "World Series Champions 1955, 1959,1963,1965,1981,1988,2020" language

Weston with Uncle Bob and Dad celebrating victory

Weston with dad at baseball game

Dodger games with dad are the best

Weston with family

Celebrating Student of the Month with family

Weston with father on baseball field, Weston's shirt text: "Mira Mesa Little League"

Proud dad and Weston during his first-ever Little League® Baseball season

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