Growing up in Honduras, David took full advantage of his unique experience and learned to speak three languages — English, Spanish and a local dialect of the island where he lives.
He loved the beach and swimming in the Caribbean Sea.
But David’s idyllic beach-side life changed suddenly in April 2016, when he became ill. His grandfather, Tom, noticed David was listless and pale.
When tests revealed David had acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a type of blood cancer, Tom immediately sought a referral to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
When we arrived in Memphis, it was raining and close to midnight. But an enormous burden was released when we came through the gates. It was like coming to heaven.
At St. Jude, David’s treatment included two-and-a-half years of chemotherapy.
Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food — because all a family should worry about is helping their child live.
“I fully expected I was going to have to sell everything to get David the care he needed,” Tom said. “I was just overjoyed when I learned we had housing, we had meals, we had transportation.”
St. Jude provided me with the ability to stay with David so he could get the care he needed.
David is now finished with treatment and returns to St. Jude for regular checkups. He and Tom are settling back into life on the island.
“He’s a bright, social kid,” Tom said. “I have all the hope in the world for him.”