Dakarai Moore Jr., a 12-year-old boy living in Detroit, Michigan, had been playing sports on a field with his friends just a week ago. When he returned home, he told his mom that his knee felt slightly swollen and his calf was tight.
They both brushed it off as minor strain from the physical activity, not knowing that Dakarai would ultimately lose his left leg in less than a week’s time.
Just days later, Dakarai’s condition had drastically deteriorated. He was running a fever, the swelling had grown into blistering that expanded across both his legs, and a green rash appeared on the bottom of his feet.
Dakarai’s parents immediately took him to the hospital where his mom, Charmaine Norman, remembered that a group of about 15 doctors suddenly rushed into her son’s hospital room.
There, Dakarai was diagnosed with necrotizing fasciitis, a rare bacterial infection in a person’s skin that rarely appears in people under the age of 20. It can be treated with antibiotics if it’s not too serious, but Dakarai’s case had spread too rapidly.
By the time the doctors saw him, they just managed to save his right leg, but were unable to keep the bacteria from ravaging his left. Amputation was the only way the doctors could save Dakarai’s life.
Dakari’s father, Dakari Moore, confessed, “That's the hardest thing I've ever had to do in my life today... sign the papers to get [his son’s] left leg amputated.”
Norman and Moore are now using their unique position to spread awareness about this disease.
Necrotizing fasciitis is not only an uncommon disease that many don’t realize exists, but it is also a disease that’s hard to track; Dakarai’s doctors still don’t know how or where the young boy became infected and can only do their best to rid the disease from Dakarai’s body.
Dakarai’s family has since set up a page online to share his story and collect donations to help cover some of their medical bills.
You can watch the full news coverage of Dakarai’s story here: