NEW ORLEANS – 14-year-old Saints superfan Jarrius Robertson will be taking the trip of a lifetime this weekend when he joins the team on its trip to Kansas City for the game against the Chiefs.
Before his trip though, he stopped at Ochsner Hospital for Children, which is where he spends a lot of his time while awaiting a liver transplant.
Friday, like all days, Jarrius was walking around with a wide smile.
“He’s definitely contagious,” said Whitney Alford. “I think what you see is what you get with Jarrius. He’s like that most days here at the hospital. He brings the joy to all of us.”
Jarrius is especially jazzed about his weekend trip to Kansas City, where he predicts a victory.
In fact, Jarrius is so enthusiastic that it’s easy to forget that he’s battling a chronic live disease.
“Essentially to survive, definitely because of his condition, he needs a liver,” Alford said.
Jarrius spends so much time at Ochsner that he calls it home, in fact the staff has helped cater to his needs, almost around the clock.
“The doctor was on call at 3 a.m.,” said his father Jordy. “He asked them to page the doctor on call and what did he ask for? He asked to be fed.”
The hospital has the only pediatric liver transplant facility in the state. One person’s donation can save nine lives.
Jarrius said he wanted to use his sudden fame to encourage more people to become organ donors.
“It helps keep me going to know that I’m helping other folks,” he said. “It helps to not pull me back down, because I need help too.”
“It takes lives to save lives,” said Jordy Robertson. “It’s not just to save his life. We’re trying to touch all aspects of organ donation and save lives throughout that.”
Jarrius is smiling through whatever life throws at him and looking forward to whatever lies ahead.
What makes him so happy? “The future,” he said with a smile.