Hope, Strength, and Healing for families coping with a child cancer diagnosis

Meet Keaton Kiddo ~ Emilio

Meet Keaton Kiddo, Emilio! Emilio is a strong, six-year-old who loves going for walks, riding his brother’s bike and collecting Jurassic World dinosaurs. Emilio was recently diagnosed with Severe Aplastic Anemia, which is not considered a form of cancer but can still call for an identical experience.

Similar to cancer, Emilio’s diagnosis has caused unfortunate strain on him and his family. He and his mom have to travel a 4 hour round trip drive to get to his weekly appointments, which take up most of their day. Due to COVID-19 Health and Safety Protocols, Emilo’s siblings are unable to be alongside him while he receives treatment. There are some moments when he misses his brothers more than others, but thankfully, Emilio has so much support from his parents, brother’s and surrounding family to help him stay positive.

Since being referred to Keaton’s, our Family Navigator Team has provided Emilio’s family with Arco gas cards to support their commutes to and from treatment. We also had the pleasure of putting together their family Hope Chest for him and his two siblings, Sebastian and Leonardo, which included items that were personalized according to their interests. We were lucky enough to meet Emilio’s mom in person and hand-delivered their Hope Chest during an appointment. It brought our team so much joy to see how happy all three kiddos were to receive their unexpected surprises!

Despite the journey ahead, Emilio continues to fight and uses his bright smile to keep his family going. We are so happy to continue to provide joy-filled experiences and other services for families like Emilio’s as they navigate their journey and help keep our mission in motion.

Meet Keaton’s Kiddo – Ellora

Months before a clear diagnosis, Ellora was experiencing a loss of appetite, night sweats, and oversleeping. For Ellora, these symptoms were seen as normal for her or seen as natural changes in the growth of a 2-year-old. Eventually, she developed little spots on her hands and unexplained bruises on her body, which the doctors deemed Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP), but after seeing an informative TikTok video on the symptoms Ellora was experiencing, her mom’s gut told her it was something more than a bleeding disorder.

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Meet Keaton’s Kiddo – Samerah

14-year-old Samerah, best known as Sam has been battling quite the challenging journey, but with the love and support of her family, friends, and community she has been able to overcome so much. At the very young age of 2 months old, Sam was diagnosed with Neurofibromatosis. Neurofibromatosis is not an isolated disorder. It causes several different conditions and can lead to the development of tumors on the brain, spine, and the nerves that send signals between the brain and spinal cord.

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Meet Keaton’s Kiddo – Pedro

Strong and optimistic Keaton’s Kiddo Pedro has a heart for soccer and music, and he absolutely loves Chick-Fil-A! Being a teen at just 14 years old, Pedro was sadly diagnosed with a brain tumor called Juvenile Pilocytic Astrocytoma. Hear about Pedro’s journey from his point of view.

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