Honored Kid

Duncan M.

Age 16
Duncan M. Kid Photo


Nazareth, PA, US


Wilms or other kidney tumor

Date of Diagnosis

December 2009



Treated At

The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia Lehigh Valley Hospital

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My Story

On December 16, 2009, our then two and a half year old son was diagnosed with cancer. Do you know how many times I have had to say that sentence? Believe it or not, my heart breaks and my eyes well up with tears every single time I do. That day was the worst day of my life. There I was, standing in a small exam room holding my boy as the pediatrician holds my wife’s hands as the doctor says, “There is a large mass in his abdomen. We aren’t sure if it is his liver or kidney, but there is a room waiting for you at Lehigh Valley Hospital,”. In response to Andrea’s question as to whether it is malignant, “Yes. We are 99.9% sure it is cancer,”. Wow. There are certain parts of that day that I remember as if it were yesterday. I will never ever forget the feeling that came over me…. helpless. As a Dad, you are supposed to be the protector, the ‘fixer’ and the rock for your family. When cancer threatens your child’s life, you lose total control. You cannot protect, you cannot fix, and the rock is now in a million pieces. Even today, as my son gets healthier and healthier, I cannot look back on those first few days, after diagnosis, without breaking down. I get asked all the time, “How do you do it, how do you deal with this horrible situation?”. My reply is always the same, “As a parent, is there anything you wouldn’t do for your child?”. No family should have to hear the words “your child has cancer.” No family should have to deal with that level of emotion and fear. I have now taken control of the situation and I can help fix things, and that rock is slowly being pieced back together because I chose to fight back the best way I know how – by supporting research and foundations that support families like ours at time when they need it most. 

Duncan is now in 8th grade who’s two greatest loves are God and hockey. Has been player for the LV Phantoms Youth Ice Hockey team for he past  8 year, is a member of the Junior Honor Society and High Honor Roll student at Saint Janes de Chantel in Easton, PA.   He has a heart of gold and is always there to help a friend. We celebrated his 12th year off treatment in June and it will be 12 1/2 years since diagnosis in December. We could not be prouder of what he has, and still fights to, overcome. 

The Childhood Cancer Ripple Effect

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