LEESBURG — Jessica and Matthew Acker watched the faces of their children Chloe, 3 and Raylan, 1, light up as packages were placed under the Christmas tree for them to unwrap Wednesday afternoon.

Well-wishers and several local help organizations joined forces to help the struggling family and arrived with early Christmas blessings in tow.

Neither parent could hold back their smiles — or tears.

“It’s hard to get up every morning, look at your son and wonder, 'Is this the day we could lose him?' But at the same time, we wake up every morning wanting the day to be a good one,” Matt said. “Everything that everyone has done for us will make this Christmas fun and what we wanted for Raylan — for all of us – a Christmas together we could always remember.”

In June, Raylan was diagnosed with Pontine Glioma, a rare, highly aggressive and terminal brain cancer.

“It’s a blessing he (Raylan) doesn’t know what’s going on, but it’s hell for us, especially because we know we need a miracle for him,” she said.

But that’s not all.

In March of 2012, Matthew Acker, an industrial roofer, fell 50 feet and broke his back. He has undergone five surgeries, the last one this summer.

In April of 2016, Jessica’s mother died after a 9-month battle with cancer. A couple of weeks later, Chloe swallowed two pennies that had to be surgically removed.

Then, Jessica was told she needed surgery to remove her thyroid after doctors found four goiters. And when a surgeon accidentally nicked Jessica’s right vocal chord , she needed a second surgery to restore her voice.

Then the worst news: Raylan fell and hit his head. Doctors discovered the brain cancer during a subsequent MRI.

Jessica, a registered nurse at Promise Hospital in The Villages and the family’s sole provider, was forced to cut her hours drastically to care for Raylan, including getting him to and from daily radiation treatments at Arnold Palmer Hospital in Orlando.

“We’ve had nothing but bad luck in the past 4 or 5 years. It’s devastating,” Matt said.

Last month, the family sought help from United Way. That kick-started the outpouring of love and support that culminated Wednesday.

“I cannot tell you how much I’ve enjoyed bringing all these people together and watching as things just happened,” said Barbara Crewell, United Way’s community services director.

Crewell contacted Joanne Lepold with Catholic Charities of Leesburg. Before long, the Arlington Villa Ladies group from The Villages and Business Networking International’s Lake County Chapter, 68 businesses strong had jumped on board.

The Acker family received toys, clothes and shoes for Chloe and Raylan, checks for two months of mortgage payments, gift cards for groceries, food, massages and other things, an offer for rides to and from Raylan’s treatments, Disney tickets for the entire family from the Boys and Girls Club of Lake and Sumter and a Christmas tree — all the makings for the Christmas Jessica and Matt could not provide this year.

Arlington Villa Ladies member Judy Carter said the group purchased more than $600 in gifts for the Ackers instead of exchanging gifts with one another.

“Being here feels great. It just chokes you up,” Carter said.

Jessica and Matt could not thank everyone enough but asked for one more thing.

“This is pretty amazing. All we can say is thank you for caring about us,” Jessica said. “All I need now is for everyone to pray for a miracle. I need to see my son grow up.”

To help further, visit https://www.gofundme.com/2ak58wk