The National – Wednesday, February 2, 2011
PNG boy Gregory Jack may have only turned seven on Sunday, but he has an amazing story to tell.
As reported by the Moonee Valley Weekly last year, Gregory has been in Australia since last month to receive life-saving surgery for a genetic disorder called Crouzon syndrome.
By luck he was discovered by holiday makers on a remote tropical island east of the PNG mainland more than 12 months ago.
He was brought to Australia as part of the Rotary overseas medical aid for children programme and is being hosted by the East Keilor Rotary.
His condition had left his skull and facial bones unable to expand as he grew, and he had been unable to close his eyes.
He required surgery at the Royal Children’s Hospital to cut and release his facial bones to bring his face forward.
On Dec 7 Gregory received the surgery.
Rotary member David Barnes said it was originally feared surgery had not worked when it appeared one side of Gregory’s face was not pulling forward.
On a return trip to hospital, just days after Christmas, it was found that the frame had also resulted in a broken jaw and widening a crack in his jaw.
But Gregory remains in Australia with his uncle Paison Vilen and the support of Rotary, and now finally appears to be well on the way to recovery.