— -- Chad Cloward was told his firstborn child wouldn't live past 2 years old.
Dallan Cloward was born weighing 3 pounds, 9 ounces and with a rare chromosomal disorder called Wolf-Hirschhorn syndrome which affects both his physical and intellectual development.
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, the disorder is so rare it affects only about 1 in 50,000 babies born in the U.S.
When Chad considered how he'd celebrate his son's 30th birthday, on Aug. 12, he knew he had to go big.
"It started at 29, I just kept thinking I need to do something really special for his birthday next year," Cloward told ABC News.
Cloward, of Scottsdale, Arizona, played with a number of ideas, such as a 30-mile bike ride or a 30-mile hike to commemorate his son beating the odds and reaching this milestone. Then two weeks ago it hit him.
"He loves doing all kinds of different things, and as he got older, I haven’t done as many things with him because of raising other kids," Cloward, 53, said.
He and his second wife have between them raised eight other children, now ranging in age from 17 to 27 years old.
"When he was really little I was really focused on doing everything with him and going everywhere with him," the father said.
For Dallan's 30th birthday his father decided to do 30 "fun things with him" leading up to the big day.
So far, the two have camped and hiked in the Grand Canyon, played in the snow in the Rocky Mountains, gone on a three-hour train ride, and ridden a roller coaster in Park City, Utah.
What's next on the birthday bucket list?
Chad is planning a trip to Disneyland in California and to a local restaurant for Dallan's favorite foods -- salsa and ice cream. For other ideas, he's asked his friends and family for suggestions on Facebook.
The real estate broker said fathering Dallas has made him "appreciate life more."
"When you're constantly faced with the possibility of especially your firstborn and your son passing away at an early age, you kind of focus on life ... instead of just trying to make a living," Chad said.
He said Dallan has also had a positive impact on his other children.
"They have definitely learned a sense of responsibility and how to take care of others. They help [with Dallan]," he said. "He does need constant care with being fed, bathed, [and] changing his diapers. It's really helped them understand that sense of responsibility."
Despite his diagnosis, Chad said he doesn't refer to Dallan as a person with special needs.
"I call him a special spirit," he clarified. "The way he interacts with people, you can just tell he’s a really good person and a really good adult."