Thanks to friends and strangers, a Mid-South boy has freedom to move in his new swimming pool

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UNION CITY, Tenn. -- In Union City, Tennessee, 6-year-old Hudson Hayes probably had a clue this would be a special day when he and his family's minivan was greeted back in town with a police escort following a trip he loved at Six Flags in St. Louis.

"I was on the slide and I got soaking wet," Hudson said

As much as he enjoyed getting soaking wet on the slide, little did Hudson know the surprise of his life was waiting for him in the family's backyard.

Family, friends and strangers were all on hand for the big reveal for Hudson: his own state of the art swimming pool.

"This is really cool. I love it. I love all the people here," Hudson said.

Hudson's parents, Scottie and Michelle Hayes, told WREG unlike most 6-year-olds, water provides Hudson with something we all take for granted - the water gives him the freedom to move.

"It's absolutely amazing and humbling to know so many people came out and did this for our son. Words can't even express...thank you," Michelle Hayes said.

Hudson was diagnosed with an extremely rare condition called 'B3GAT3.

It's so rare his doctors believe he is the only person in the world suffering from this condition.

The disease affects his whole body, robbing him of joint stability and muscle tone.

There is no cure.

The only thing that gives Hudson relief from pain is being submerged in water.

"Just knowing how much he loves to be in the pool, and the freedom it allows him when being restricted most of the day. When he's in the pool you can tell there's enjoyment," Scottie Hayes said.

The entire surprise started when Hudson told his physical therapist, Gayla Lane, about his dream of getting a pool.

Lane just happens to be in the business of helping turn dreams into a reality.

She is the coordinator for the Dream Factory, a non-profit group which grants dreams to critically ill children and the one that sent Hudson and his family to Six Flags.

"We can't take away a lot of things, but what we can do is put a smile on their face and for a brief moment give them a chance to forget all about that and their troubles," Gayla Lane said.

Even better, Gayla`s brother, Mike Alford, just so happens to own Mike`s Pools and Spas.

"The more I heard about Hudson, the more I knew this little guy needed an in ground pool and I asked Gayla to get a letter written up," Alford said.

They reached out to pool suppliers and distributors all across Tennessee and Kentucky and electricians such as Donnie Mays.

He stepped up to install a pump for Hudson's pool.

"I haven't met him.  Mike told me it was a rare disease. I was just excited to give my service to help,"  Mays said.

Volunteers have been working around the clock to build the pool in just two days.

Filters, liners, cement, and even an expensive handicap lift were donated by businesses that are usually competitors.

Eric Wilmes said his concrete company had to help.

"We are so blessed for what we get to do everyday. And what he has to go through and what his parents do for him, it's a blessing to be able to help a kid like this," Wilmes said.

Now Hudson, a little boy with a rare disorder, is getting some relief in the water of his own pool.

For a few fleeting moments, Hudson is free.

He's in control.

"I see a happy kid that's not restricted in any way," Michelle Hayes said.

Hudson's parents told us they're still hoping to find a medical researcher who can help provide answers and eventually a cure for their son's disorder.

To find out more about Hudson and his family and how you can help, click here.


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