Addison was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) on September 28, 2012. She was just 6 years old and a 1st grader at Southdale Elementary. In the weeks leading up to her diagnosis, Addison had been running low grade fevers. She was diagnosed with an ear infection and strep throat and had been complaining that her head hurt. We also noticed that she had a lot of bruises on her legs. Antibiotics didn’t seem to be working so back to the doctor we went for more bloodwork. Needless to say, the results were not what we wanted or hoped for. We received the call that Addison had leukemia and we immediately packed up and headed to Dayton Children's.
Addison was in treatment for two and a half years and then needed physical therapy after treatment to help her regain her strength and muscle control. Addison is now a 6th grader at Van Burden Middle School and is doing GREAT. She loves animals, art, reading, swimming, and basketball. She is a Girl Scout, plays the flute in the band and plays recreational basketball. Addison is honored to be the 2018 Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Girl of the Year and our family is grateful for the work that the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society is doing for all those touched by cancer.
Gabe, our brilliant, bubbly, only child, had been very healthy until the age of seven, when mysterious things began happening to his body. Starting with the inability to use his right arm, then swelling of his feet, and other baffling symptoms for three painful months. Upon seeing a rheumatologist for an evaluation, a more serious concern arose. Gabe underwent a bone marrow biopsy, “just to rule out cancer”. However, on March 12, 2013, the biopsy proved Gabe to have 97% leukemic cells in his marrow. He was to start induction chemotherapy immediately for B-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. We were blindsided by this diagnosis after his atypical presentation of the disease and thus began Gabe’s journey of the fight of his life.
Gabe battled for three and a half years at Dayton Children’s Hospital and Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, including a prolonged stay in ICU and isolation due to chemo shutting down his liver. Gabe fought the fight hard with the support of his family and team and is now in remission. Gabe is now a seventh grader at Kettering Middle School and is healthy, active, and grateful. He enjoys wrestling, cooking, and spending time with his dog, Jackson. His courage, tenacity, and radiant spirit continue to inspire us and all who know him.