A memorial service held Friday for a little Dyer, Ind., boy who died last weekend while struggling to become well enough to have a potentially life-saving transplant.
Some of the thousands touched by the boy's struggle and story gathered at the Bocken Funeral Home in Hammond to pay their respects and say goodbye.
"Children, run up to your parents and give them a big hug and tell them you love them. Parents, do the same thing because you never know how much time you'll have with them," said Seth's father, Tim Petreikis. "I miss my son terribly."
Visitation at the funeral home, at 7042 Kennedy Ave., was held from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m. A private funeral with the family was planned for Saturday at Memory Lane Cemetery in Schererville.
Seth was diagnosed with DiGeorge Syndrome shortly after he was born. The condition inhibits the body's immune system and only one doctor in the United States -- at Duke University Medical Center -- could perform the thymus transplant that could have saved his life.
But ultimately, the boy would never have an opportunity to have the surgery. Doctors last week discovered he had severe tracheomalacia -- a weak airway -- that would have required him to live on ventilation for years.