'Angel Baby' defies odds, reaches second birthday

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wwltv.com

Posted on June 2, 2011 at 10:21 PM

Updated Friday, Jun 3 at 4:07 PM

Bill Capo / Eyewitness News

ST. TAMMANY, La. ― They are the picture of perfect love, Courtney Roth gently rocks her son Tripp, sometimes for hours at a  time, sometimes for days. Tripp's appearance can be startling.

He has a severe form of a rare disease called Epidermolysis Bullosa. Almost any touch can make his skin blister, so he is wrapped in layers of protective bandages, and he needs morphine to hold back the pain he has felt every day of his life.

But to Courtney, Tripp is a living miracle.

"We keep praying for our miracle. He's just a little miracle in himself, because he is still pushing through, and he is still fighting hard."

And Tripp just did something miraculous: the child who was not expected to survive just celebrated his second birthday.

"It is a miracle, and you know, they told us that he wouldn't be here for his first birthday, but it is also bittersweet because he can't do the normal things that a two year old does."

So Courtney and Tripp's two grandmothers have put their lives on hold to care for Tripp, and help him find as much joy in life as they can.

"Spoiled! Definitely spoiled. He has never spoken a word, and can tell us exactly what he wants, and exactly what he doesn't want."

 We first met Tripp in February when he showed everyone how tough he is, fighting through the pain so he can just have fun like any toddler playing with his toys as his mother watched and smiled.

"Oh, I see an Angel baby. I really do," Courtney said in February.

The sign on the door tells you a lot about the challenges this family faces. Tripp can't have many visitors, but Courtney's world opened after the Last Eyewitness News report in February. People from all over responded.

"People have been amazing, just with the emails, and the comments on the blog, and the cards that I receive in the mail saying that people are praying."

 Courtney knows that Tripp is changing the lives of others, and that their kindness is changing his.

"It literally gets me through each day to have, you know, I mean, I have a really bad day, and get a really nice email from someone, or a really nice card in the mail saying how strong they think I am, just little stuff like that helps you to get through."

 Every day is a challenge, but for Courtney, every day is a miracle to spend with Tripp.

You can visit Courtney's blog about Tripp at www.randycourtneytripproth.blogspot.com.

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