The Ty Louis Campbell (TLC) Foundation is joining St. Baldrick’s to fund pediatric brain tumor immunotherapy research. Cindy, co-founder of the TLC Foundation, shares why this partnership is giving them renewed hope.
Cindy and Lou Campbell founded the Ty Louis Campbell Foundation after their 5-year-old son, Ty, died of a brain tumor.
Hope fueled my passion and gave me the strength to care for my son during his childhood cancer treatment without coming undone at the seams. Without hope, I would have grieved his loss for over a year before he actually took his last breath.
And, without the hope for a cure that I continue to strive for 21 months after his loss, I don’t know that I would find the will to get out of bed at the dawn of every new day I face without him.
Like every parent who hears the words, “Your child has cancer,” I hit the Internet the second I learned of his diagnosis, a rare pediatric brain tumor called atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumor (ATRT). I had such tremendous hope that my Ty would be one of the 20% that survived the devastating diagnosis over five years, and that he would be one of the 10% that didn’t relapse. We nicknamed him SuperTy with certainty that his super strength would prevail.
Lou and Cindy Campbell of the Ty Louis Campbell Foundation with Zach Semenetz (second from left), St. Baldrick’s Volunteer Event Organizer, and Susan Heard (second from right), St. Baldrick’s Senior Director of Partnerships and Major Gifts.
“Having an Honored Kid every year helps us stay connected to the cause and really show people the true meaning of why we’re there,” Zach said.
This was his seventh year as a Volunteer Event Organizer (VEO) and his ninth time shaving his head for St. Baldrick’s. And this year, his event at Claddagh Bar and Grill in Mahopac, New York, honored Ty Louis Campbell, also known as SuperTy, who died from brain cancer just days after his fifth birthday.
Cindy Campbell with her son, Ty.
Despite all of this, when I asked him what he wanted to do when he was all better, his answer was simple: “I’m gonna jump in a muddy puddle!”
Cindy Campbell and her son, Ty. Ty was a brain cancer warrior who passed away last October shortly after his fifth birthday.
Cindy and Lou Campbell founded the Ty Louis Campbell (TLC) Foundation in memory of their son who passed away from brain cancer just after his fifth birthday. Today is Ty’s sixth birthday, and the St. Baldrick’s Foundation and the TLC Foundation are proud to announce that we are partnering in the fight to cure childhood cancer. Cindy explains why:
Fall in New York is so incredibly perfect. The trees are enchanting, the crisp breeze fills my lungs with purity and the sun continues to warm my face. Days like this prove to me that Ty is all around. Every falling leaf is a poetic reminder of our love and loss.
Ty was born on a beautiful fall day. He died on a beautiful fall afternoon, too.
Ty Louis Campbell is gone, but his story continues. This is our promise to him. His impact on the world around him gives his short but inspirational life such meaning. His soaring spirit will continue to fuel a fire in our hearts, and strangers around the world will continue to fall in love with the little boy who fought so valiantly. The little boy who hurt so much, but maintained a bigger, brighter smile than the healthiest of children.
Ty never did break his fever. He never really woke up. Not until he decided to leave this earth and fly freely among the clouds. At that very moment, he was awake. He had returned to Lou and I to say goodbye. To say our hearts are broken would be like saying it tickles to have your stomach ripped open with a spoon.
We call him SuperTy because his fighting spirit is remarkable. He is a brain cancer warrior and has beaten the odds over and over again. Ty is 4 years old and a two-year veteran in this war against childhood cancer.
When we heard those words.