Trip helps family after Clintonville boy's transplant

Post-Crescent | Amelia Compton Wolff

From left Amy, Neely, Jack and Mark Goerlinger. Make-A-Wish granted 15-year-old Jack's wish for a snowboarding trip to Aspen, Colo. after he received a kidney transplant from his mother Amy. Photographed at the Green Bay Press-Gazette in Green Bay, Wis. on Wednesday, July 29, 2015. Kyle Bursaw/Press-Gazette Media/@kbursaw (Photo: Kyle Bursaw/Press-Gazette Media/@kbursaw)

Jack Goerlinger of Clintonville was an active 12-year-old and straight-A student in 7th grade when he started suffering from severe headaches.

At first, Jack’s symptoms baffled doctors who couldn’t find anything wrong. In February 2013, Jack got very sick and was flown to Children’s Hospital in Milwaukee where doctors discovered he was in renal failure.

Jack was diagnosed with a rare vascular disease called microscopic polyangitis. This autoimmune disorder causes inflammation of the small blood vessels which leads to complications in multiple organ systems including the kidneys, nervous system, lungs and skin.

The Goerlinger family spent the following months trying to stabilize Jack who remained in the hospital in Milwaukee. This meant Jack’s parents, Mark and Amy, would take turns staying in the hospital with their son.

“We would wave at each other as we passed on the highway,” Amy remembers. Jack’s younger sister, Neely, stayed with friends and family while her parents were either working or traveling to be with Jack. Continue reading