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St. Jude patient Marina smiling.
 

Marina expresses her joy of life and family

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At the age of 2, Marina has a joy of life and is, according to her mom, like a little ham.

"She's constantly singing and dancing with her siblings. She's always laughing."

 
St. Jude patient Marina at the park.
 

Not long before little Marina was found to have eye cancer, her father lost his leg in an accident. Suddenly the household was making do on a single income.

A referral to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital made all the difference for Marina and her family. 

 
St. Jude patient Marina in wagon at St. Jude.
 

“There's no way I could have afforded treatment otherwise,” said her mom, Janine.

 
 

Families, like Marina's, will never receive a bill from St. Jude for anything.

 
St. Jude patient Marina smiling with her mom.
 
 

Still, retinoblastoma was a frightening diagnosis. “I was just terrified,” said her mom. “I was afraid for my daughter’s life, and I was afraid for her to be in any kind of pain.”

 
St. Jude patient Marina with her sisters.

Marina with her sisters.

 

But despite receiving systemic chemotherapy and chemotherapy injections directly to her right eye, her mom said Marina remained her cheerful, affectionate and playful self with everyone, including her St. Jude care team.

 
St. Jude patient Marina in wagon at St. Jude.
 

She says, 'They love me. They take care of me.' I said, 'Yes, they do.'

– Janine, Marina's mom, referring to her St. Jude care team

 
 
 

Your donation helps give kids like Marina the chance to grow up.

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