Honored Kid

Sarah Riley

Sarah Riley Kid Photo

Location

Carmichael, CA, US

Diagnosis

Brain or spinal cord tumor

Date of Diagnosis

April 1993

Status

Passed away

Treated At

Kaiser Permanente Sacramento Medical Center

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My Story

Sarah Marie Riley was born a healthy, happy child with two older sisters. She later became the middle child of 5 girls. At age 11 Sarah's once animated personality became lethargic and she was falling asleep during the day. We knew something wasn't right so after 9 long months of testing, she was finally diagnosed. I took her to almost 100 medical related appointments. She was seen by many different specialists who were looking in their areas of expertise for the problem. She underwent many lab tests, MRIs, CT scans and more. She had surgery to biopsy the brain tumor and radiation therapy. Sarah was very brave  through it all, trusting in Jesus. Then she went into remission. The cancer returned and she battled it with chemo. She then lost her vision at age 15 or so when the cancer returned for the second time. She brilliantly learned braille and did all of her schoolwork with a special typewriter. She also had her schoolwork printed out in braille. She was learning mobility with a white can through a wonderful mobility instructor and was ready to be dropped off in the neighborhood her high school was in. Then the cancer returned for the third time and she became very confused and frustrated. She chose not to fight it and was at peace. She was ready to meet her Creator. We ended up having to take her out of school. Her schoolmates honored her by bringing her a graduation cap and gown. They also printed her up a special honorary high school diploma. She was highlighted in the high school yearbook and honored very well. Sarah spent the last three months of her life in the hospital and touched many lives during that time. Many people came to visit her and were ministered to. She was an inspiration to many and shared her faith every chance she got within her youth group, church, school and anyone who visited. One of the things that brought her the most joy was treating her entire family to Disneyland through her Make-A-Wish wish. She passed away on her daddy's birthday September 30, 2001. Her precious life touched many over the years and we are blessed by people who share their memories of her with us. Sarah   made quite an impact as she always pointed us to Jesus. For that, we are grateful. 

The Childhood Cancer Ripple Effect

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Children who are fighting or have fought cancer inspire others to be part of the Foundation's mission — to support the most promising research to find cures for childhood cancers and give survivors long and healthy lives.

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