Survivors

‘Our Own Little Valentine’s Day’: Ambassador Sarah’s Wedding Story

by Sarah Rostock
February 14, 2017

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, your favorite lovebirds are back – 2012 Ambassador Sarah and her honey Patrick. You remember how it all began, almost 10 years ago – boy meets girl, girl fights cancer with boy by her side, boy pops the question. Now read on for the happiest of happy endings.

Sarah and Patrick on their wedding day

Photos courtesy of Chelsie Darling Photography

Patrick and I tied the knot on October 29, 2016. It started like any other good day, with Starbucks and reflection.

I kept thinking, ‘I am about to marry the man who had loved me through it all — through long distances, relapse, transplant, recovery, and finishing my degree. He has never failed to love me.’

I had no fears about our marriage standing the test of time, because we had already been through so much together. Our wedding day had been more than nine years in the making – and what a day it was!

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Research

Moving On From Cancer: The Challenges Adolescent and Young Adult Survivors Face

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
September 23, 2016

Being a teen or young adult can be tough. Being a teen or young adult who has survived cancer is even tougher. Read on for more about the unique challenges adolescent and young adult (AYA) survivors face, and how a St. Baldrick’s researcher is reaching out to help.

Dr. Lisa Schwartz explores the health app with a patient

Psychologist Dr. Lisa Schwartz and a patient look at the health app that she’s using in her texting intervention study.

The teenage and young adult years are a time of discovery, a time to map out one’s identity, and to stretch into what could be. Those years are a coming-of-age dance, with a side of hormones, prom dates, and boundary pushing.

Sometimes it’s a little awkward, and maybe filled with more than a few mistakes. But as much as some of us wanted to skip right over them, those years are crucial.

But what happens when cancer is thrown into the mix?

That already rough developmental period gets rockier.

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Kids with Cancer

‘My One Ticket to Live On’: How a Clinical Trial Saved Mitch Carbon’s Life

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
September 9, 2016

Like most college freshmen, Mitch Carbon is excited to be getting a fresh start. But unlike his peers, just two years ago, he didn’t think he’d live to see this day. Read on for more of Mitch’s story and the clinical trial that saved his life — all made possible by YOU.

Mitch hugs his dad

When Mitch Carbon was a junior in high school, he was preparing to die.

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Families

Out of Treatment and Back to School: Two First-Graders Find Acceptance in the Classroom

by Erinn Jessop, St. Baldrick's Foundation
August 31, 2016

To most parents, the first day of school is a big deal in a good way. For the parents of kids fighting cancer, however, the first day of school can be the start of one more scary, uncharted journey. But it doesn’t have to be. Read on for the story of two cancer fighter classmates who were embraced by their school, where their cancer journeys became a valuable lesson in acceptance and the realities of childhood cancer.

Alex and Scott sit together

Alex and Scott sit together during a meeting at the clinic.

Every day, the first-graders at Triangle Math and Science Academy used to break out the Clorox wipes to clean their desks. The scrubbing of their workplaces became so routine that it’s now second nature to some of the kids who attend this charter school in North Carolina.

But to Liz Ferm and Nancy Lenfestey, it means the world.

That’s because both of their sons were in that class, and their classmates started the routine to keep them safe.

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Advocacy

A Balancing Act: An Update on Kate Foster

by Kate Foster
August 23, 2016

Two years ago we brought you the incredible story of Kate Foster, who was just getting back to the gym after surviving childhood cancer. Now she’s 17 and still competing in gymnastics — all while keeping up top grades, applying to colleges, and advocating for kids with cancer. Read Kate’s story in her own words below.

Kate Foster Beam

When I was 8 years old I started competitive gymnastics and it quickly became my life.

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Advocacy

‘Never Stop Fighting’: Why I Support the STAR Act

by Pete Bush
July 25, 2016

Thirteen-year-old Sydney spent much of her early childhood battling a brain tumor. This year, the nine-year childhood cancer survivor took a special trip with her dad, Pete, to Washington, D.C. “This experience taught us how important it is to never stop fighting for something you believe in,” Pete writes. He tells Sydney’s story and shares why the trip was so meaningful to them.

Pete Bush and Sydney at Action Days

Pete and Sydney outside of Senator Marco Rubio’s office during this year’s Childhood Cancer Action Days in Washington, D.C.

Whiplash. Pulled muscle. Bronchitis. Flu. Virus. Stomach bug. For months, it was a different diagnosis at every doctor’s visit.

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Families

10 Reasons Why My Parents Are My Heroes

by Cheyenne D.
July 24, 2016

We asked Ambassador Cheyenne who her heroes are. Her answer? “My mom and dad.” So today, for National Parents’ Day, we asked her to tell us why — and she gave us 10 great reasons. (Number 10 is our favorite!)

Cheyenne and her parents

Cheyenne with her mom and dad, Amy and Levi.

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News

A Heartfelt Goodbye to Two Board Members

by Sarah Swaim
July 1, 2016

Today marks the end of an era for Joe Bartlett and Chuck Chamness as they complete their terms on our board of directors. Read 2012 Ambassador Sarah’s heartfelt letter thanking them for all the hard work they’ve dedicated to kids with cancer.

Joe Bartlett and Chuck Chamness holding books

Joe Bartlett (left) and Chuck Chamness hold their goodbye gifts at their final St. Baldrick’s board meeting.

Dear Mr. Bartlett and Mr. Chamness,

I want to thank you for all you have done as members of the St. Baldrick’s Foundation’s board of directors.

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Families

Life After Brain Cancer: Isaac’s Late Effects

by April Schippers
June 21, 2016

Ambassador Isaac finished treatment for medulloblastoma almost four years ago. But today, on the five-year anniversary of his diagnosis, the effects of childhood cancer are still evident in his everyday life. Read what his mom, April, has to say about what survivorship looks like for Isaac.

Isaac and his mom, April

People often say to me, “Move on. Let it go. He’s cancer free. We’re sick of hearing about it.”

Yes, it has been some time since Isaac finished treatment for medulloblastoma on August 24, 2012. He has made tremendous strides, and let’s face it — he’s still here and cancer free.

So why don’t I forget it? Why do I seem forever trapped in this cancer nightmare?

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Families

The Best Worst News: Ezra’s Story

by Elisabeth Parker
June 16, 2016

Since his birth three years ago, little Ezra has learned to love airplanes, chocolate milk, and his big brother. He’s also learned what it’s like to have childhood cancer. Read what Ezra’s mom, Elisabeth, has to say about his early diagnosis and how some bad news ended up saving Ezra’s life.

Ezra with his glasses on

Ezra, now in remission, was diagnosed with juvenile myelomonocytic leukemia (JMML) when he was 4 months old.

On the morning of April 20, 2013, we welcomed our second son, our sweet, little Ezra. For a couple hours, all was well with the world.

We can’t remember the exact moment, or the exact words that first brought news of Ezra’s medical issues, but nothing could have prepared us for the frightening journey we embarked upon that day.

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