Local band hosting charity bowl for Eliza O'Neill

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - In a dark and dusty warehouse, a doctor, a lawyer and a couple of businessmen unwind after work with a tune up.

"We're just trying to help as much as we could," Dr. Tom Edmunds said.

Helping plays well with the guys of bandkamp. Their first gig years ago raised thousands of dollars for a head trauma victim.

And on this rehearsal night, they await the arrival of a little girl who will soon benefit from bandkamp's musical medicine.

"We're looking at a really tragic story that we're trying to help cure," Edmunds said. "So if there's a chance, I think it's worth taking and it's very moving, anyone who gets involved, especially those who meet her."

Tom asks Eliza: "We're gonna play for you Friday night. Is that cool?"

Eliza replies "yes."

First impressions don't tell the whole story of Eliza O'Neill.

She's only 4 and shows no signs of her genetic disease, Sanfilippo Syndrome Type A.

Doctors say there's no known cure. Children are robbed of talking and walking until they die in their teens. But a medicine in the works has left her parents beating the drum to get Eliza the first dose of what could be a wonder drug.

"All indications are Eliza right now is a perfect candidate," Eliza's dad Glenn said. "The trial won't happen for 12 to 15 months so we need to do everything we can to have Eliza at her best."

The hope heard in the voice and seen in the eyes of her dad, Glenn, has inspired their friends in Columbia to rally. To show even in this moment there's a reason to sing for Eliza.

"I think the word hallelujah I think everybody thinks of church and God and how important that can be in people's lives and but by the grace of God all of us are here," Edmunds said. "It's got deep meaning for an event like this."

Leonard Cohen's song "Hallelujah" will be on bandkamp's playlist for a charity bowl aimed at raising money and the spirits of the O'Neill family who is in desperate need of a miracle.

"We didn't have much to do with it at all, it's people giving themselves to us," Glenn said. "Every dollar goes to the production of the trial to end this disease and it's a disease that could be cured in 12 months. We can put an end to this disease now."

Tom said reading about it on a piece of paper or a computer doesn't compare to seeing a child afflicted.

"It really brings it home because you think of your own children and how much you love them and these parents love Eliza just as much as I love my children and you'd do anything for them," Edmunds said.

The charity bowl for Eliza will take place Friday, Nov. 22 at Leaside, 100 East Exchange Boulevard in Columbia.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and tickets cost $40. For more information, contact the event organizer Farrah Brown at tbrown1233@msn.com.

For more information on Eliza's journey, click here.

For more on how to help, click here.

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