Toddler With Missing Limbs Gets ‘Magic Legs’ in Children’s Storybook

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A toddler who’s missing his limbs is now the superhero character in a storybook tale of perseverance.

Ethan Faria, 2, inspired the book, titled “Marley & Maverick Find Ethan’s Magic Legs” after the toddler lost fingers, an arm and part of both legs to a rare bacterial infection.

“I think the book is fantastic,” mom Rachel Faria of Toronto, Ontario, told ABC News. “When it first came out, it was very overwhelming. It was like, ‘Wow, this is about our son — a child we almost lost and now here’s this book. I hope it gets placed in every library, in every country and every city.”


Ethan was diagnosed with haemophilus influenzae type b in July 2015. The infection quickly spread across his body, resulting in the amputation of his legs below the knees, part of his right arm, and his pointer finger and thumb on his left hand.

“From the beginning, it was horrifying,” Faria said. “You have the doctors telling you that this child that was so happy, rambunctious, running, walking that he wasn’t going to make it. It was very terrifying because we didn’t know what to expect. There were a lot of tears and sadness, but once they found out what he had you get into the acceptance of it and say, ‘Let’s deal with it.'”

Ethan spent 10 weeks at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children. He was released in October 2015.

Today, Ethan has been fitted with a pair of red prosthetics, which his mom calls his “magic legs.”

“It’s more fun for him and they are magical,” Faria said. “Thank God he’s [doing] amazing. He’s thriving and he’s a typical 2-year-old with a little attitude sometimes, and he’s happy all the time. When you see him, he’s got a smile on his face.”


After Ethan was released from the hospital, Felicia Pizzonia, a publisher and his mother’s friend, contacted children’s book author Kari Ward of the Molly & Maverick series.

Ward then wrote a story about the pair wishing for magic legs for Ethan so he could play ball, ski and join other adventures.

A book launch party will take place tonight in downtown Toronto. A portion of all sales on will be donated to the Faria Family.

Faria hopes Ethan’s story and the book spread hope to children also missing limbs, she said.

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