Donations change the life of wrestler, family
Life has surely changed for a legless wrestling dynamo from Long Beach and his family since News 12 first introduced him in April.
When viewers first met 6-year-old Isaiah Bird, he was living in a shelter at a Glen Cove church with his mother and 1-year-old brother. At the time, the family could not afford a wheelchair.
Touched by Isaiah's story, people across Long Island rallied around his family. Home Medical Supply of Garden City built a customized wheelchair for Isaiah free of charge. UFC Middleweight Champ Chris Wiedman hosted a fundraiser that netted $20,000 in donations from around the world.
The money helped establish a trust fund for Isaiah and secure a one-bedroom apartment. Long Beach Christmas Angel, a local charity, donated the furniture.
"I feel like my family has a new life," said Isaiah Bird. "It feels awesome."
His mother, Bernadette Hopton, called the donations a "beautiful thing."
"I will definitely pay it forward when I get the chance," said Hopton.