It was pretty strange when Alex started to get winded just from climbing a flight of stairs. At 16, he was an active athlete, playing soccer four or five nights a week and doing CrossFit. Even other kids’ parents could tell something was off, that he was running slower during the last soccer game of the season for the Chili Shamrocks, a year-round premier-level soccer team. It had been an extremely hot summer, so he attributed his problems to that.
When she was almost 11, Kayla was mysteriously sick for two months. She noticed she couldn’t walk around New York City during a dance competition without feeling sick. First her doctors thought she had a cold or mono, and then a stomach bug. Then, on her 11th birthday, her lymph nodes became the size of baseballs. Her blood work showed that her white blood cell count was through the roof.
When Ra’Quan was 12 years old, he did not understand what having cancer meant, so when his mom told him that he had a bone tumor, the severity of the situation did not immediately strike him.
Although Alexis is only 9 years old, cancer has been a part of her young life for nearly three years. Long trips from Jamestown to Roswell Park for treatment are not easy, but she finds ways to stay positive by listening to her favorite music, staying active and embracing those around her.