Henry was a creative ten year old who delighted everyone he met with his sense of humor and compassion for others.
He loved science, art and music, and dreamed of traveling to Japan to design video games. His capacity to learn seemed endless, and his aptitude continually tested off the charts.
In 2006 Henry’s diagnosis of a brain tumor began a two-year journey that included three surgeries, three chemo regimens, 93 rounds of radiation and four clinical trials. Through it all Henry remained courageous, accepting, accommodating, funny and philosophic. He joked with the doctors and nurses and sang their praises. He downplayed his surgeries, stating: "It's only brain surgery...they didn't operate on my heart!"
As we look back on the last two years we had with Henry, amidst all the horror, anguish and pain, we can also see the days filled with activity, adventure, and fun. Driven by Henry's sense of wonder and joy, we took every opportunity to explore, play, and savor everything a community had to offer. And while not every trip to the hospital was cause for celebration, every trip home was. The Henry we know and love always came out in full force during the drive home, and he buoyed all our spirits. He always jumped back into his schoolwork and faced his classmates with aplomb. When asked if he wished to address the class about his condition, he did so with honesty and confidence. His counselor said: "Henry is our hero." Ours, too.
Donations made to the Henry Cermak Fund for Pediatric Cancer Research Fund have generously supported a St. Baldrick’s Scholar Grant for Gary Kohanbash Ph.D. Dr. Kohanbash is researching ependymoma brain tumors at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.
Donations made to the Henry Cermak Fund for Pediatric Cancer Research go directly to the St. Baldrick’s Foundation to fund lifesaving childhood cancer research around the world. The Foundation is guided by a Scientific Advisory Committee, comprised of leading experts in the childhood cancer community, to ensure that every dollar makes the greatest impact for kids with cancer.
These people make us smile - they’re the doers and money-raisers on behalf of the Henry Cermak Memorial Fund for Brain & Spinal Tumor Research. They’re shaving their heads, hosting events, starting fundraisers and more to make childhood cancer research possible.
Start your own St. Baldrick’s head-shaving event to raise money on behalf of our Hero Fund! You’ll be paired with a staff member who will walk you through every step of the process, and you’ll have fun knowing you’re doing a great thing for kids with cancer.
Register to shave your head and raise money for our Hero Fund at any St. Baldrick’s event happening around the world! Not finding an event near you? Register as a virtual shavee and shave your head anytime, anywhere.