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Bundle of Energy

Imagine the thrill of being able to finally do something you've wanted to do your whole life. For eight-year-old Lyndon Baty from Knox City, Texas, that experience was going to school — and this spring, he finally got to do it.

Lyndon was born with ARPKD in 1996. Doctors diagnosed the condition shortly after his birth and told his parents the disturbing statistics regarding life expectancy and ARPKD. "We were shocked since we didn't have any family history of the disease." But the parents did everything in their power to keep their hope — and son — alive. While there were a number of medical challenges, Lyndon made it through his first four years on his own. He needed to start dialysis in 2001.

Lyndon's parents, Sheri and Louis, say his health has always been a struggle, but Lyndon has been up to it. "He's always had a very good attitude," says Louis. One of the things the parents felt was helpful was telling him about treatments before he received them so he could prepare himself.

Even on dialysis, the Baty family kept the faith. "You have to know that God has a plan, and it's out of your hands," Sheri Baty said. "You just take your kids and love them just how they are and enjoy every minute you have with them."
Lyndon received a kidney transplant in July 2003. Since then, he's been a new kid. His parents say even in the hospital, he was bursting with energy. He would clean up every room that looked even a little dirty. He's been nicknamed "Mr. Clean."

Family Photo: The Baty Family: (L to R)
Lyndon, Louis (Dad), Chance, Sheldon and Sheri (Mom)

When starting school, you'd think Lyndon would have to make a lot of new friends, but he didn't. Turns out he already knew many of the kids in his class. From the beginning, family, friends, and the community rallied around the Batys to form a strong support system.

Lyndon now helps return some of that support to others in the community as well. He has put together a presentation, and he gives talks about his life before and after the transplant. He's spoken before several area groups including the regional Lions Club. He's even been invited to speak before the state retired teachers association.

Sheri and Louis say Lyndon's going to do the same thing other 8-year-olds will do — other than play football or anything else that might cause trauma to the abdomen. Other than that, he has a new life ahead of him. "He gets to do things he's never done before," says Sheri Baty. "Not bad for a little boy who wasn't expected to live."