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Local blood donations keep Superior boy’s story pumping

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SUPERIOR, WI -- Our annual time for giving is colliding with an unprecedented time of uncertainty.

It may be hard to find a reason to smile right now, but that's not the case for 10-year-old Jackson Beattie who is loving every moment of his young life.

The 4th grader from Superior says, "It has been one brilliant road. I've loved it. It's been amazing."

Jackson has a strong passion for math and aspires to be a coder when he grows up.

As he spends his time piecing together games and apps on computers, his parents remember the pieces that got him where he is today.

Due to a birth defect, Jackson was born with damaged kidneys, which required an immediate transplant. Then, after multiple surgeries, he had to begin a new health battle.

His father, David Beattie, told us, "(Jackson) had a blood disorder that basically destroyed his platelets. We had to get shots and transfusions to try to counteract that… So, he needed quite a few units of blood at that point."

Without these blood donations, transfusions, and a kidney from his cousin, Brett, there's no telling what Jackson's story may have looked like.

"It's something we treasure every day. We didn't know where we were going to be ten years ago… He was in bad shape for an infant," said Jackson's mother, Sara.

Now, Jackson is stable, taking medications as he learns from home with his sister, Brooklyn, and their dog, Eugene.

With our area's blood supply becoming dangerously low, KBJR 6 is teaming up with Memorial Blood Centers to host a donation drive on Monday at Pier B Hotel in Duluth.

Ryan Haff

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