New Albany community welcomes boy's return home after third brai - WDRB 41 Louisville News

New Albany community welcomes boy's return home after third brain surgery

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NEW ALBANY, Ind. (WDRB) -- A three-year-old battling a rare disease had quite the surprise Friday night, just two nights before Christmas.

Luke Stemle has Tuberous Sclerosis which causes him to have frequent seizures, often twice a day.

Friday, more than 100 friends, family, and neighbors walked through Luke's New Albany neighborhood to his house to surprise him and his mom.

Earlier this month Luke and his family flew to Houston so he could have his third brain surgery to try and fix the seizures.

Since the surgery ten days ago, Luke has not had any seizures.

Families braved the rain and chilly temperatures to light candles and sing carols to Luke’s home, his mother Stephanie answering the door with tears in her eyes.

“He started having seizures when he was just three weeks old and we spent a month at Kosair Children’s hospital,” Stephanie Smith said. “He had his first surgery at five weeks old.”

Since then, Stephanie has been writing an online blog called “Leasing an Angel,” which chronicles what Luke and the family has been going through.

Smith hopes the blog will be an inspiration to other families going through the same thing. Neighbors say it already is. 

“She is a really good example of what is possible when moms are going through struggles with their children,” said family friend Jenna Vigar.

Stephanie Smith is also planning to start at non-profit to help parents of children who are in long term hospital care.

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