Dylan Silbernagel

Dylan Silbernagel of Litchfield.

One-year-old Dylan Silbernagel of Litchfield, the son of Joshua and Heather Silbernagel, was born with a cleft palate and a cyst in his brain.

Dylan’s cleft palate was recently repaired, his mother said, and in November he had brain surgery where a doctor cut holes in the cyst for fluid to flow.

“So he goes back every three months now … to make sure that that surgery works,” Heather said. “And then down the road, we hope the plan is that we don’t have to do MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) every three months, that we can go years. But the worst-case scenario would be that he’d need to have a shunt put in his brain to drain the fluids.”

It’s difficult to tell when interacting with Dylan that he has this extra stuff attached to him or that anything is wrong with him, Heather said.

“He’s just a normal baby, he would never know that he’s got something on his brain, or his mouth was wrong,” she said.

Money from the Tim Orth Memorial Foundation will help the Silbernagels with medical costs, staying at hotels for early appointments with a doctor and other expenses. Heather said it’s nice to know that she doesn’t just have immediate family for support, but that there are other people or foundations willing to help.

—Although the 2020 Tim Orth Memorial Foundation basketball jamboree event was canceled due to COVID-19, you can still donate to help this year’s 12 recipients. For more information about the recipients and how to help, click here.

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