LAKEWOOD - In young children, meningococcal meningitis can kill within days.
For survivors and their families - birthdays are a big deal.
In Lakewood, Saturday, dozens of family members and friends gathered at Ray Ross Park to celebrate the 18th birthday of Nicol Ocampo's son Alex.
He was diagnosed with meningococcal meningitis more than 16 years ago when he was only 18 months old.
Nicol said her son was diagnosed a week late because doctors couldn't figure out what he had. A week is an eternity when it comes to treating meningitis.
Alex was left with lasting effects and disabilities from his diagnosis. He now has epilepsy, and the triggers for his seizures are unknown.
His family says every birthday, and every day is a milestone worth celebrating.
Alex will be a senior in high school this year.
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