Our precious Luke was only 4 years when he passed away from an anaplastic ependymoma brain tumor. In Luke's 4 short years he endured multiple brain and spinal surgeries, radiation, chemotherapy, blood transfusions, physical, speech and occupational therapy, months of impatient treatment, a stroke and gamma knife. As Phil and I spent everyday with Luke, Lexi and Caleb spent months without us. They too, very young, watched as their little brother faced this tough journey. My family will be forever grateful to our families and friends, the United States Coast Guard who allowed Phil to be by Luke's side for 8 months while Luke was treated in Seattle, and the countless doctors, surgeons and nurses who helped Luke. Seattle Children's Hospital and their all inclusive care helped Phil and I in our darkest moments. They too loved Luke. I will be forever impacted by my time at Seattle Children's, because not for one moment, did I lose hope. We became part of a family with other parents battling what we were, a group that nobody would have chosen, but when faced with your child battling a brain tumor they became our life line. Today, as we continue to travel to Seattle for Run of Hope, we see some of these families who were with us. Luke's best friend in the hospital, who had the same diagnosis, is a survivor, is one of our heroes, and is still very much a part of our life. To see her grow up, we know that Seattle Children's is making a difference
Luke captured so many hearts and minds. There was a time that Luke could not speak, but in awe we watched as his sparkling blue eyes and his beautiful smile captured hearts. He didn't have to say a word, because he showed us all to embrace the moment, to just love! To be present, to laugh. His arms wrapped around my neck hugging me, I will forever be able to feel. Phil, Lexi, Caleb and I were so blessed to share 4 years of his young life. Although he is no longer with us, he is still very much a part of our life and who were are as human beings. As we walk this year, we reflect on his 4 years of life, who he would be today at 14, the love we all shared, and the tremendous impact Luke had on others.
Team Lukealicious will always walk in honor of Luke, and we will continue to help fight for a cure for pediatric brain tumors. No family should endure what we have, and it is because of the countless individuals who have loved and supported Team Lukealicious that we are seeing change and advances in brain tumor treatment and protocols in children affected. Luke was such a gift to everyone who knew him, and even today for those who have not met him, he continues to touch lives. He was a beautiful young boy, taken much to early, and because of all of you, our son, Lexi and Caleb's brother will continue to live on. THANK YOU for your continued support.
Our team, TEAM LUKEALICIOUS is registered to participate in the 2022 Run of Hope Seattle on Sunday, September 25th. Join us LIVE! at Seward Park at 10 am. 100% of your registration fee and donation will be sent to Seattle Children's Hospital to fund research for pediatric brain tumors.