Underwood Gives Life-Chaging Gift

Alpha Media Ryan Piers

A former NFL player is tackling Cystic Fibrosis.

The ex-three-year-pro and Washington High School graduate Colton Underwood gifted a local girl with the disease an AffloVest at the OSF Children’s Hospital of Illinois.

Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is a progressive, genetic disease that causes persistent lung infections and limits the ability to breathe over time.

The vest, by vibrating, clears secretions in a patient’s lungs. It frees them to move around while undergoing the treatment rather than being tethered to a breathing machine.

“This is going to allow them to be able to do treatments in the car; treatments while they are walking out of the house,” Underwood said.

Underwood is giving the vests to 50 people battling the disease across the country through his Legacy Foundation.

On Thursday, he gave one to Edelstein resident Lillian Stringer. The ten-year-old has been suffering from the disease since she was about a year old.

She says the vest is life altering.

“I won’t have to take so many breaks out of the classroom. And help me not miss so many days at school,” she said.

It will make her life easier at home, making the half-hour treatments she receives more comfortable.

“It means more freedom. She can move around in the vest. Not have to sit in the chair for 30 minutes,” Mom Andrea Stringer said.

Stringer was chosen by Underwood and his team from 72 Illinois applicants.

“It just means that a lot of people care about me and really want me to get better,” Lillian Stringer said.

Underwood started the foundation after his cousin was diagnosed with disease around the time he entered the NFL in 2014.

Learn more about his foundation HERE.

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