A dog for Josh

Josh Ghiz is a prisoner in his own body.

Because of a genetic disorder, every cell in the Jackson 9-year-old's body is flawed. He is blind and deaf and can't walk, and he is painfully thin despite the expensive growth hormones he takes.

But there is something that could make his life better: a golden retriever mix dog named Chrissie.

The dog will cost $5,000 to $6,000 because of her special training. Not only will she keep Josh occupied, but she will watch over him.

With three other children and loads of medical expenses, the Ghiz family can't afford Chrissie. Josh needs the community's help to raise the money by the beginning of December, when the dog will be ready.

Tax-deductible donations can be made to the Area Wide United Way with "Josh Ghiz fund" written on the check memo line. The donations can be mailed to the Southeast Missourian at P.O. Box 699, Cape Girardeau, Mo. 63702, dropped off in Jackson at the Southeast Missourian office at the corner of Hope and Main streets or dropped off in Cape Girardeau at 301 Broadway.

Any and all help will certainly be appreciated.