You might remember the story of siblings Javon and Jakayla, which we shared with you in 2008. See how the lives of these two loving kids have changed since then.
In 2008, Javon and his little sister, Jakayla, were featured in the Thanks and Giving campaign. The siblings, who are funny, friendly kids, love music. But they have something else in common, too: They were both treated at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital for acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).
Javon was just 2 years old when his family learned he had ALL, a type of blood cancer. He underwent chemotherapy for three years, and on the day he was supposed to end treatment, his family learned the cancer had come back. Javon underwent an additional 146 weeks of chemotherapy. He finished treatment in 2008, and for two years, his cancer stayed in remission.
Without St. Jude, my children wouldn’t be here.
But in 2010, Javon’s family learned he’d relapsed again. This time, he underwent chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant, with his dad serving as his donor.
In 2008, Javon’s family was shocked to learn 2-year-old Jakayla also had ALL. Her initial treatment included two-and-a-half years of chemotherapy, but in March 2012, the family learned that Jakayla’s cancer had returned. Her continuing treatment included chemotherapy and a haploidentical bone marrow transplant.
Today, Javon and Jakayla are both out of treatment and visit St. Jude for regular checkups. Their cancer remains in remission. Their mother, Lisa, is thrilled to see her children thrive, and she’s grateful for St. Jude.
“The staff is so wonderful,” Lisa said. “They’ve given so much support to all of us through the years.”
Javon is now a high-school sophomore. His favorite subject is science, and he plays trombone in the school’s band. Jakayla is in fifth grade and loves to read, sing and dance.
“Without St. Jude, my children wouldn’t be here,” Lisa said. “St. Jude gives you peace of mind, and they never give up hope.”