Beneficiaries

 
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Texas Children’s Hospital Cancer Center

TCH is the largest freestanding pediatric hospital in the United States, and is ranked number four in the nation’s pediatric cancer institutions by the U.S. News & World Report for 2017-2018. Being the largest pediatric cancer hospital and hematology center in the country, TCH has helped children from over 35 states and 26 countries. TCH cares for all sick and injured children, regardless of race, creed, or ability to pay, averaging about 73,700 outpatient visits per year. The hospital’s world-renowned staff is dedicated to supplying the finest patient care, while also providing research that has pioneered many of the standard treatment protocols for pediatric cancer today.

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Snowdrop Foundation

The snowdrop is the first flower to bloom in the spring, even blooming when snow is still on the ground. It is a hearty flower, nearly indestructible by nature. Childhood cancer patients demonstrate indestructible attitudes and spirit while battling the life-threatening illness of childhood cancer. Named for the indestructible flower, Snowdrop Foundation provides scholarships for college-bound pediatric cancer patients and childhood survivors while raising awareness and funding for continued research to cure childhood cancer. Their donations are designated to four specific areas: Snowdrop Scholarship Program, Teen Program, Research, and Awareness. Visit snowdropfoundation.org to learn more.

Stories

 

Luke George

Luke was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) on December 18th, 2013 as he limped out of Kindergarten complaining that his leg hurt. He was an active, funny, happy five year old until his days consisted of clinic visits, port pokes, and horrible chemo. He turned into a quiet, reserved, but still fairly happy Leukemia patient under the care of Dr. ZoAnn Dreyer. Dr. Dreyer navigated us though his road map for the next 3+ years and told us what we had to do.

Luke matured from the confines of his hospital bed, recognizing medicines, telling nurses and staff how he liked procedures to be done and gaining compassion for those suffering alongside of him. He struggled through the ups and downs of the next twelve grueling months and finally arrived to the maintenance stage, the light at the end of the tunnel. He was older now and we began to notice the active, funny side of Luke George returning.

He loved to be outdoors and asked when he could resume sports and try out ice hockey! Leukemia didn’t get him down. It didn’t discourage this precious 7 year old and now we are living life again! The care at Texas Children’s was abounding in love, support and pristine care and it got us through the dark days. We have less than two years to go, seeing our friends and familiar faces every month as we go to the cancer center. The one place we never wanted to be, the place on the 14th floor that would make us physically ill, is now the place that we love to be a part of and we love to go!

Luke Guerrero

In early March 2013 we noticed that our generally energetic 3 1/2 year old little boy, Luke, was unusually lethargic. At the park, rather than climbing up the slide and jumping on the play structure Luke opted to lie down on a bench, completely out of character. He also began to look very pale. Luke’s mother’s intuition kicked in and we called the pediatrician and made an appointment just to check things out.

It was two days before we went in and in the meantime he began running a fever. At our appointment, the pediatrician sent us to the hospital for blood work and about the time we got home from doing the blood work, the phone rang. Our pediatrician told us we needed to go downtown to Texas Children’s Hospital right away... Luke’s blood work suggested Leukemia. As you can imagine, we were in shock. We numbly packed a hospital bag and drove down to Texas Children’s Hospital, really having no idea what was going on or what to expect.

It was a Saturday, so we went in through the Emergency Room, but our pediatrician (Texas Children’s Pediatrics) called ahead and they were expecting us. We were seen right away and a whirlwind of blood tests and physical exams ensued. Within a few hours our pediatrician’s diagnosis was confirmed…Luke had Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL).

We were admitted to the hospital and taken upstairs to a room, with the expectation that it would take a few days to determine exactly what we were dealing with. Genetic tests on the leukemia cells would be run to confirm Luke’s exact type of leukemia, and a treatment plan put in place. By Monday morning, Dr. Judith Margolin and her fellow were ready to sit down with us and explain everything they knew about Luke’s illness and how they planned to cure it. They had pages and pages of information on Luke’s specific diagnosis and flow charts of treatment plans to go over with us. While it was all quite overwhelming, they were amazingly compassionate and patient with us as they explained what the next 3 years of treatment would look like.

I’ll never forget Dr. Margolin’s encouragement that day to remain strong and optimistic, as Leukemia is a curable disease. Luke began treatment right away, and was in full remission within 28 days! The chemotherapy worked great to kill the cancer, however, it damaged many of his organs. Luke suffered significant liver and pancreatic damage. We spent a large portion of March and all of April at the hospital. Luke turned out to be a rare case in terms of his response to chemo, as there were numerous side effects he suffered that they'd never seen before. The staff at Texas Children’s Hospital was wonderful the entire time; leaving no stone unturned in terms of trying to determine what was causing his ailments, and ways they could help him and keep him comfortable, both physically and mentally.

By May, many of his side-effects were under control, and he was given a small treatment hiatus to allow his body to recover. Dr. Margolin reworked his treatment protocol in order to tailor it to his specific needs; and by June we were back on track with a revised treatment plan in place, moving from the main Texas Children’s campus in the Medical Center, to the more convenient West campus located in Katy, Texas. Throughout the summer, Luke returned to the hospital roughly every 3 weeks for inpatient chemo. By the end of September he was finished with his inpatient chemo. He now returns to the cancer clinic about once a month for continued treatment as well as taking oral chemotherapy pills at home both daily and weekly.

Chelsey Campbell

Most of those involved in the Derricks & Diamonds Charity Softball never had the Honor to meet Chelsey Cambell. In a relatively short time she touched the lives of many people, and is the reason the Snowdrop Foundation exists.

In September of 2005, Chelsey was a normal sophomore in high school. She had been elected homecoming co-princess, and the holidays were right around the corner. In October, all of that changed as she was diagnosed with advanced, stage four undifferentiated sarcoma, a rare cancer of the soft tissues that only affects fifty people worldwide, annually. Statistically, only one person in ten survives this type of cancer.

Upon receiving her diagnosis, she quickly told the doctors she "would be that one person in ten." In February, after three months of chemotherapy treatment, Chelsey had a record-setting 28 hour marathon surgery at Texas Children's Cancer Center. Ninety-five percent of her tumors were removed. Only two of the tumors remained in her body post-surgery. After four weeks of radiation, only one remained. Continued radiation treatments did not eliminate this last tumor. Post-op scans later showed her previous tumors had returned, and the emergence of new ones.

Chelsey received her Angel's Wings on December 9th, 2006.

 

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