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Caden Lampert started feeling sick at a basketball practice in December 2013. That was on a Wednesday. On Thursday he came home from school because he felt nauseated and couldn’t hold food down. They thought it was the flu, but by Friday he could barely walk or open his eyes. In the OHSU Doernbecher Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU), Caden was diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome, a life-threatening autoimmune disease where the body’s immune system begins to attack the body itself. Caden stayed in the hospital for two months, regaining his strength and relearning how to walk, feed himself, write, bathe and just about everything else.

Today Caden is recovering like a champ and he barely even remembers his weeks in the hospital. But the family is faced with a constant dilemma: rest is key to his full recovery, and rest is the last thing he wants to do. He likes to rumble and play all day long. As he races up and down the stairs in his leg braces, shooting rubber bands with utter precision, his mom reminds him to take it easy and slow down. She does her best to divert his constant quest for action and speed with things that won’t drain his energy, like taking a welding class and learning to play guitar.

Caden’s decision to design the Air Jordan Retro 8 DB reflects his burning passion for the game of basketball, complete with flames on the outsole and his own basketball jersey number, 14, on the custom glow-in-the-dark, speckled upper design. A boom box on the inside of one tongue shares his love of music, while the other bears the name of his brother Ryland, who battled childhood cancer. And there’s also a special shout-out to both of his brothers Blake and Ryland, on the foot straps. Caden’s collection also includes a cap with the words “Hang loose,” “Rock on” and “Brave,” and a T-shirt that brings his passions for music, basketball and bravery together.

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