I joined a club at Penn State which sponsored the Whiteheads. It was exciting to sponsor a family whose child had just recently gone into remission. Shortly after I joined Emily relapsed, and it quickly went from bad to worse. I remember wanting to have hope, but finding it hard to find, since everything logical said she wasn’t going to live. Throughout the year, the members of the club and I would pray that she would make it out alive. We kept up with the live journal Emily’s parents kept about her condition and watched as they made one tough decision after the next. We watched as this little girl fought with all her life to not only keep alive, but also, keep hope alive for everyone else. Her parents decided to enroll her in an experimental procedure at CHOP (Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia). During treatment Emily got extremely sick and was admitted to the PICU (Pediatric Intensive Care Unit). When Emily was in the PICU at CHOP I just hoped she would be well enough to live out her final days at home, curing her cancer seemed like an impossible dream. One fine day in May, I got a text from one of the members of my club saying Emily was doing well and her tests came back extremely positive, in fact, her body was killing the cancer cells.
It is hard for me to believe there was once a time when there was a real possibility that Emily might not be there even a week from now. It has been a true pleasure to not only watch her grow into a healthy girl, but to watch grow as a person.
I am extremely excited and honored to run on behalf of her for the Philadelphia marathon. Emily would not be here today, if not for cancer research, and her procedure is paving the way no longer for just treatment, but possibly for a cure. Every amount helps, every penny is a penny we did not have before.
Let's cross that finish line together and finally, once and for all, kick cancer's butt.
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