Francisco became a cancer survivor April of 2018. He is currently still visiting doctors regularly to ensure he remains cancer free. Francisco had a cancerous tumor in his stomach and recovery from treatment has not been easy. September of 2018, mom informed ACFC that he is starting to feel like his normal self. He has joined the baseball team at his school and enjoys spending time playing with friends. Arizona cancer Foundation for Children has been alongside Francisco since 2017 providing financial assistance, K9 therapy visits, sunshine packs and more.
Lyla was diagnosed with Pre-B cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia on March 3, 2018. Her diagnosis came following a 14 week period of unexplained leg pain, being sick and multiple visits to the pediatrician. From the date of diagnosis, "our lives changed forever" tells mom. "We had no idea what would happen next. Fast forward to September 17th, 2018, that morning as we are waiting to see her nurse practitioner, in comes her social worker with a bag. She told us ACFC chose Lyla to receive a Sunshine Package. Lyla's eyes lit up as she quickly looked through the bag. Then her social worker walked over to us and handed us an envelope, with a check. Tears started coming down my face."The financial assistance and sunshine pack is not the only support ACFC has provided. Lyla is soon to be the next ACFC family to be adopted through out Adopt-A-Family Program.
Kelsey was diagnosed with neuroblastoma in the brain on November of 2016. Due to intensive treatment, she has experienced a delay in her physical and cognitive development due to treatment. She originally received treatment at St. Jude Children's Hospital in Tennessee and now visits Phoenix Children's Hospital on a monthly basis for lab draws because she is in remission.
Angel was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia September of 2017. Although still continuing treatment, Angel is on an outpatient basis and is excited to be able to return back to school. Arizona Cancer Foundation for Children assists Angel with expenses for traveling to Phoenix Children's Hospital three times a week, financial assistance, a K9 therapy visit and a respite/gift delivery.
Abriel, at just 7 years old was diagnosed with Ewings Sarcoma. After 2 years of treatments and trials Abri is cancer free and thriving. Although due to the severity of her treatments and cancer, Abri bravely underwent an amputation below the knee. She is now an inspiration to others and has a passion for using her voice and experience to speak out and help kids just like her.
Brooklyn was diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma. A year later Brooklyn was declared NED(No Evidence of Disease). Although Brooklyn is cancer free she still has one year of treatment ahead of her. ACFC assists Brooklyn and her family with their travel expenses to New York. Because Neuroblastoma is so aggressive her family lives in fear of a relapse.
Mason was diagnosed with an aggressive form of brain cancer at 14 years old. After 2 years of constant treatment Mason continued to defy the odds. ACFC assisted Mason and his family with out-of-state travel expenses for his medical treatment. Mason lost his battle to cancer in 2018 but his spirit lives on and motivates many to live beautifully and raise awareness for childhood cancer.
Tanasia, she was diagnosed on January 29th, 2018 with Hodgkin Lymphoma Stage III. Her diagnosis came following a six week period of being sick and multiple visits to her pediatrician. After numerous blood tests, scans, x-rays and biopsies, the family heard the words, “it’s cancer”. Tanasia started her first round of chemo on January 29th. Since she did so well through her first days she is able to continue her treatment on an outpatient basis. As of today, she has completed two full rounds of chemo. She will start round three this month, April 2018. Aside from our financial assistance and sunshine pack provided, Tanasia benefitted from a visit from one of our Therapy Dogs. Scroll to the Dog Blog section of this newsletter for full details and the heart warming pics we were able to capture at her visit.
Anna: On Friday, March 24, 2017 Anna ran over to her mom mid-soccer game and told her she needed to make an appointment to see an eye doctor because her eyes were getting blurry. A few days later she complained of double vision and then soon after, her mom picked her up from school and noticed her eye drooping. She was immediately taken to Phoenix Children's Hospital where scans revealed 2 brain tumors. Anna was diagnosed with a very rare aggressive type of cancer called DIPG. Her love for playing piano, cooking and playing with her siblings was changed forever. Anna passed away on July 20, 2017 her mom writes, “I look at Anna before the disease and she was so special-but the girl I learned and lived with during our intense, fast battle with cancer was an Anna that I can't quite describe. She taught me things I could only learn through such an experience. And believe it or not when I see those pictures of her swollen little face and in a wheelchair I miss that Anna just as much as the pre-cancer Anna because amidst all that hard- I experienced love and joy in a whole new way and family in its purest form.” ACFC is providing End of Life financial support to the Ortega family during their difficult times.