Help for Hunter … a Boy Fighting Acute Flaccid Myelitis (AFM)

5-year-old Hunter Cech is a gentle, fun-loving and outgoing boy, who is always smiling. He loves playing outdoor sports like soccer and riding ATVs. You should see him on his snowboard!

That has all changed since Hunter was hospitalized five months ago with a sudden incapacitating illness. Cerna Homecare is working with his family to raise funds for a service dog and more intensive, consistent and targeted physical therapy for Hunter.


In October 2019, Hunter was stricken with Acute Flaccid Myelitis (AFM), a rare polio-like condition. The odds of contracting this rare disease are one in a million. In Hunter’s case, AFM has caused sudden paralysis below his neck – with only slight movement in his feet and left hand. He cannot breathe, eat or swallow on his own. Hunter’s severe symptoms required a tracheostomy for breathing and a feeding tube in his stomach for nourishment.

There are no specific treatments for AFM, a disease that mostly affects people below the age of 18. A long journey is ahead for Hunter due to his unknown prognosis and rareness of the disease.

Cerna Homecare’s non-profit, The Cerna Foundation, has taken on Hunter’s care management. Cerna’s President, Marc Friedman is acting as emotional support, patient advocate and medical advocate, while also taking the lead on Hunter’s case management.


A GoFundMe account has been created by the Cech family and friends. The Cerna Foundation is also working to raise funds. Thus far, donations have been put toward 24-7 skilled care, specialized equipment, treatments, therapies, transportation, surgeries and physical rehabilitation.


Family and friends are selling bracelets to raise funds and raise AFM awareness. The bracelets are $5, with 100% of the proceeds going to Hunter’s recovery.


Despite his care, Hunter’s condition has not improved since October. There is hope. Increased physical therapy is key to Hunter’s progress. A service dog would supply companionship, lower stress, improve Hunter’s happiness, as well as perform functions directly related to Hunter’s current disabilities. The Cerna Foundation is dedicated to making a service dog happen for Hunter. Costs for care are in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. The more we raise, the better the odds for Hunter’s recovery and rehabilitation.

Please consider donating. On behalf of Hunter’s parents Doug and Debbie, his sister Hayli, and all who love little Hunter, your donations are infinitely appreciated.

Hunter Cech GoFundMe:

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