Meet Caitlyn

Being diagnosed with a brain tumor has been one of the scariest experiences for Caitlyn and her family. But their fears are being eased with St. Jude by their side.

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St. Jude patient caitlyn
 
 
 

In September 2019, Caitlyn went to the eye doctor for glasses.

The next day, she was told she had a brain tumor.

Her decreasing vision was due to a slow-growing germinoma tumor that had likely been with her from birth and, due to its location, was inoperable.

St. Jude patient caitlyn against a white background

“She was a little scared,” said her mom, Shea. “She had a lot of questions. She couldn't quite figure it out, because nobody in our family has ever had cancer…. I was in a fog for about two weeks.”

Caitlyn was referred to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital; they arrived by ambulance in the middle of the night.

St. Jude patient caitlyn

Caitlyn onboard Delta Flight 1225, known to patients and their families as the "Flight to the North Pole."

“It was dark. We couldn't see anything. But I remember the next day, a Saturday, they were doing the race in September [the St. Jude Walk/Run to End Childhood Cancer]. And I remember just thinking, ‘Wow, this is amazing.’ Just to see that, and all the people supporting.”

Clearly, this was someplace special.

St. Jude patient caitlyn

St. Jude is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. 

   

At Jude, Caitlyn began a treatment program that includes chemotherapy and proton therapy. Even if she’d rather be home playing with her siblings and going to church, Caitlyn has bonded with her care team. “She loves her nurses. Both inpatient and outpatient nurses,” said Shea.

“They’re fun,” said Caitlyn. “They get me.”

She enjoys her doctor, too. “He's funny, and gives me a lot of good reports,” she said.

St. Jude patient caitlyn

“He just kinda makes that experience a little bit more relaxed,” explained Shea. “She's the kid who has a lot of anxiety and worries a whole lot. So between him and the nurses, they have really helped.”

patient caitlyn
 

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