Dad Was Told Son Wouldn’t Live Past 2, Now They Celebrate His 30th Birthday

Dad Was Told Son Wouldn’t Live Past 2, Now They Celebrate His 30th Birthday
Birthday Cake Omer Wazir / Flickr CC BY 2.0
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Chad Cloward was told his son, born with a rare chromosomal disorder, would not live for more than two years.


Suffering from Wolf-Hirschhorn disorder, Dallan Cloward weighed 3 pounds and 9 ounces at the time of his birth. The disorder affects Dallan’s physical and intellectual development.

However, defying all odds stacked up against him Dallan will celebrate his 30th birthday next month. The father-son duo has planned 30 activities they will do together leading up to Dallan’s birthday on August 12.

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, the disorder only affects 1 in 50,000 children in the United States.

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“I love watching Dallan continue to defy the odds,” Chad said, as reported by TODAY. “It was important for me to do something special for him to mark the accomplishments he’s made in his life so far and all he’s done for me, too.”

While Chad has thought about a few ideas for activities he will be doing with his son, he took to Facebook to ask for more suggestions and received numerous responses from people. As reported by ABC News, they camped in Grand Canyon, visited the Rocky Mountains, went on a three hour train ride, and rode on a roller coast in Utah. Chad plans to take his son to Disneyland in California and to a local restaurant to treat Dallan to his favourite foods.

Chad said his son has made him “appreciate life more.”

“When you’re constantly faced with the possibility of especially your firstborn and your son passing away at an early age, you kind of focus on life … instead of just trying to make a living,” Chad said.

The two also visited the National Ability Center in Park City, where Dallan got an opportunity to ride an adaptive bike – something he has dreamed of.

Those who have Wolf-Hirschhorn syndrome experience physical and intellectual disabilities. Dallan is extremely slight, weighing 55 pounds and can’t speak or walk long distances.

Chad said Dallan has inspired his other children. “They have definitely learned a sense of responsibility and how to take care of others. They help [with Dallan],” Chad said. “He does need constant care with being fed, bathed, changing his diapers. It’s really helped them understand that sense of responsibility.”

#7 on 30 for 30. National Ability center in park city. Great program for all types of people.

A video posted by Chad Cloward (@chadanddallan) on

Also read: Children Left To Dehydrate In Desert: Photos Of Mom Mary Bell Who Left Kids As Punishment

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