Annual vigil remembers and honors children with cancer - Tucson News Now

Annual vigil remembers and honors children with cancer

Annual vigil remembers and honors children with cancer (Source: Tucson News Now) Annual vigil remembers and honors children with cancer (Source: Tucson News Now)
TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

Dozens of people gathered on the front lawn of Banner University Medical Center Tuesday night for an annual vigil organized the Candlelighters Childhood Cancer Foundation of Southern Arizona.

Among them was Owen and his mother, Reness Nasca-Vaughan. 

"He gets into everything. He just climbs and crawls.He's just big and explorative," she said. 

With big, curious eyes and fast feet, Owen looks like your typical one and a half-year-old. But what you can't see, is that he's already been on quite the journey. 

"We're just lucky. We're very lucky," Nasca-Vaughan said. 

Owen was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer of the immune system at just six weeks old.

When he was eight weeks old, Owen started a year of chemotherapy and high dose steroid treatments. 

For Nasca-Vaughn, a first time mom, it was an unexpected journey. 

"Any ideas that I had about what motherhood would be like have been completely altered and that's probably for the best," she said. "I think that it's better than I have ever imagined, it's scarier than I ever imagined. It's more fulfilling than I ever imagined."

Owen finished treatment in May and is now waiting for a six month check up. 

The annual event brings together families and creates a sense of community for those fighting the same battle. Whether it's a child going through treatment, or losing one, in the case of Scott and Becky Belanger. 

"We are a part of a very small club that no one wants to be a part of," Becky Belanger said. "But when you meet people who are also in this club you have this instant connection. We understand each other's stories and journeys. And to have somebody who gets it is everything."

MOBILE USERS: Download our app on your Apple and Android devices.

Copyright 2017 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

  • HealthHealthMore>>

  • New ways to conquer sleep apnea compete for place in bedroom

    New ways to conquer sleep apnea compete for place in bedroom

    Thursday, July 12 2018 7:49 AM EDT2018-07-12 11:49:08 GMT
    Saturday, July 14 2018 4:33 PM EDT2018-07-14 20:33:42 GMT
    (AP Photo/Emiliano Rodriguez Mega). A technician prepares equipment to monitor Martin Braun's brain activity during a sleep study at the New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center in New York on Wednesday June 27, 2018. Braun, 76, stopped using...(AP Photo/Emiliano Rodriguez Mega). A technician prepares equipment to monitor Martin Braun's brain activity during a sleep study at the New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center in New York on Wednesday June 27, 2018. Braun, 76, stopped using...
    New remedies for sleep apnea are vying for a place in the bedrooms of millions of people craving a good night's rest.
    New remedies for sleep apnea are vying for a place in the bedrooms of millions of people craving a good night's rest.
  • TPD shows off fake pill press

    TPD shows off fake pill press

    Friday, July 13 2018 11:43 PM EDT2018-07-14 03:43:34 GMT

    The opioid crisis is a deadly one, and the Tucson Police Department is showing how deadly it really can be.

    The opioid crisis is a deadly one, and the Tucson Police Department is showing how deadly it really can be.

  • KOLD INVESTIGATES: Doctors escape punishment for taking cash to over-prescribe opioids

    KOLD INVESTIGATES: Doctors escape punishment for taking cash to over-prescribe opioids

    Friday, July 13 2018 8:32 AM EDT2018-07-13 12:32:47 GMT
    Richard Hollawell, a New York attorney, and Dina DeMarest look over a Subsys label. Hollawell represents patients wrongly prescribed Subsys in their civil lawsuits against doctors.Richard Hollawell, a New York attorney, and Dina DeMarest look over a Subsys label. Hollawell represents patients wrongly prescribed Subsys in their civil lawsuits against doctors.

    KOLD Investigates has learned the doctors who received the most money from a controversial drugmaker, to prescribe its potent opioid, have faced little scrutiny for their role in what federal agents have called a scheme.

    KOLD Investigates has learned the doctors who received the most money from a controversial drugmaker, to prescribe its potent opioid, have faced little scrutiny for their role in what federal agents have called a scheme.

Powered by Frankly