Last fall we made the decision to branch out to families that are affected by cancer as well, there were two Lil’ Sluggers that helped inspire us to do this and their stories are listed below.
It was another heart parent that shared a post about this sweet little boy name Parker Jaxon that had a rare form of cancer, just seeing his sweet little smile griped my heart… A few days later I contacted his parents and sent him a Slugger Pack, the pictures of him holding his bat and ball made me cry and smile at the same time… Just few a months later Parker went on to be another Angel above the Outfield; As he looks down on his friends and family I pray that he has a little extra grin when he sees that he helped inspire us to create a new branch of Lil’ Heart Sluggers called “Tough Lil’ Sluggers” motto “Knocking Cancer Outta the Park” Parker may have been the first lil’ guy to get a Slugger Pack that didn’t have a heart defect but he certainly won’t be the last…
Our goal is to share God’s Peace, Comfort, and most of all his Love, and if we have the opportunity to share that with more families and these precious children that have to fight these awful diseases then that’s what we’re going to do. As you can see in the pictures below his smile was priceless!!! Parker Jaxon was born on July 7th, 2013 and received his Angel wings on March 30th, 2016 as we begin this new year please join us in continued Prayer for his family and be sure to check out his facebook page also listed below.
Ally is a 11 year old girl from North Carolina, her father and I were friends on Facebook simply because we were both North Carolina Tarheel fans. When I seen his post that his daughter had just been diagnosed with cancer I reached out to him and my family and I began to do what we always do and that’s Pray and reach out to others for support. At the time she was diagnosed she was a very active girl, she played softball, basketball and was very active in Taekwondo. Ally like her dad and I, loved the University of North Carolina so I hit twitter and I tweeted ever softball player for UNC asking for prayers and support, one of the players tweeted and followed me back, at that point we could private message back and forth and long story short that player took this simple tweet and turned it into far more than anyone could ever imagine. Since that day Ally has been a bat girl for the softball team, has practiced with the softball team and even received a get well letter from each of the softball players….. But Most Importantly she is doing Great and is Cancer Free!!
Please be sure to read her story and see her pictures below including one picture of her as Leukemia/Lymphoma Society’s Girl of the Year!
Ally is not your typical eleven-year-old kid. She is someone who has a HUGE heart and cares for others. She loves to be active and started playing softball around age six. She is a strong teammate and, in her eyes, she has ten other sisters who are her best friends. At the age of eight, she started Taekwondo and has worked her way up the ladder. She earned her 2nd Degree Decided Black belt in February 2016 with her high kicks and strong snap, and when it comes to sparring, she can in her words, “take the boys to the wood shack” when she needs to.
When it comes to school, Ally strives to do her best. She is an Honor student at C.C. Griffin Middle school in Concord. Good grades have never come easy for her, but she never quits. That has been our motto. She is always trying to better herself when it comes to her studies. As you can see, Ally has accomplished a lot in her eleven years. However, she isn’t quite done yet. Cancer has picked the wrong Diva to mess with.
In January/February 2016, Ally started losing weight and having night sweats. We thought it was her body getting ready for the change and at first we just dismissed these symptoms. We dismissed the symptoms until the weight loss affected her muscle mass in her arms and legs and we realized she had lost 7.5lbs in 4 months. We took Ally to her pediatrician who performed blood work. At first, she was told to eat more protein, dark leafy greens and take a vitamin with iron. After four weeks we went back for a check-up hoping all her labs and weight would have improved. Her red blood count from March’s blood work was 9.5. But she had lost more weight and her red blood count decreased another point to where it was 8.5. Her pediatrician was stumped, so she referred her to a Hematologist.
On Monday, April 25, 2016 we met with Dr. Hinson, of Levine’s Children Oncology, who examined Ally and ordered a chest x-ray and more blood work. We weren’t even to our car in the parking deck when we got a phone call asking us to return to the office. Dr. Hinson already had the results of her chest x-ray, and as parents, our hearts sank, when we were told that Ally had a large mass in her chest just above her heart. She stated that Ally needed to be admitted to Levine’s Children’s Hospital in Charlotte that night. She was admitted, and started with multiple tests the following day.
Ally first had a PET scan to see if there was any other tumors in her body. There were five in total. That Friday, we received Ally’s diagnosis, which was confirmed as, Stage 3 Hodgkin’s lymphoma. As you can imagine, our family was overcome by shock, even more so because Ally’s diagnosis came just one year after her father, Preston, beat Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Nevertheless, I can say this. We beat it once and we knew we would beat it the second time for good. Ally had a port placed and began chemotherapy. She did amazing. She was awake and asking the nurse’s questions every time they came in. She wanted to go through all the snacks she received over the course of the week and wanted to donate to other patients and parents. This was the Ally we hadn’t seen in weeks. She was full of life again.
In September 2016, Ally finished her last treatment and is now cancer free. Ally has many names (Team Ally, Diva Ally, Ally Strong). Her Taekwondo family stated that cancer messed with the wrong Black Belt. Her softball team knew she was going to “knock it out of the park”. Ally has an amazing support team behind her. Her story has reached so many people across the world. We, as her parents, want to send everyone our deepest thank you for their continuous prayers and support.