“If you don’t have a struggle, you haven’t really lived.”
Sounds like a country song, right? Just maybe because when life gives you a second chance, you live it like Jessica Turri. Like most good Nashville ballads, hers tells an unforgettable tale, from childhood cancer to TV scripts and, yes, country songs.
00:00 Jessica: I grew up with this mentality because I had seen such amazing and intense and powerful things happening.
00:09 Allison: It does get kinda raw.
00:11 Narrator: Introducing St. Jude Flashpoint.
00:14 Jessica: It was terrifying to be going into the unknown.
00:18 Allison: I was just literally terrified.
00:21 Jessica: And having this gut feeling that maybe that's what we were talking about.
00:25 Allison: They called us back at like 10 o'clock at night on a Sunday. That never happens. That doesn't happen.
00:32 Jessica: Oh, it could be cancer, but that's what you had. This blood marker that you're showing, that would be so rare.
00:38 Allison: And she said "Look, there's something crazy wrong with your daughter's blood. She needs some more extensive blood work."
00:46 Jessica: In that moment, I remember just sort of falling to the bathroom floor.
00:53 Allison: This kid's afraid.
00:55 Jessica: That was a defining point.
00:57 Jordan: I just know how worried I was about her. Maybe it's something that I should talk to her about.
01:03 Steve: Kids just think you're going to be sick for a while and you're gonna come through on the other side of this.
01:08 Allison: I was so scared.
01:09 Jessica: I remember thinking, I can't do this any longer.
01:12 Allison: That I literally could not remember the words to the Lord's Prayer.
01:15 Jessica: I don't know how I can go on.
01:18 Jordan: She's such a fighter.
01:19 Jessica: Even though Ali can't be here to keep telling the St. Jude story...
01:24 Jordan: And I have just gotten to float through my life so easily.
01:29 Jessica: You have to promise me that you will keep telling it. We will do everything that we possibly can because we have a voice.
01:37 Steve: You're at the Miley movie and then you'd see Miley Cyrus running off, where you know that's not Miley, that's Jessica.
01:45 Jessica: Everybody around me just really stepped up and they were like, "Hey, you need to ask for a script and you need to ask for playback before they put you in so you can see what she just did."
01:52 Allison: The film crew was there. The HBO film crew was there.
01:55 Steve: Martin, Brad's guitar player showed up and his wife...
02:01 Jessica: We could feel that this was a place unlike anywhere we'd been before.
02:05 Jordan: And when it comes to bigger picture issues, it really makes you aware of who your family is and how important they are.
02:15 Aaron: Naturally Jess just plays a huge part in my inspiration for writing songs.
02:20 Jordan: My sister is such an incredible piece of my life and when I look back on my life, everything without her, I just... I don't even wanna imagine it.
02:30 Allison: We don't get to choose what happens to us, but we do get to choose how we let it affect us.
02:37 Narrator: Rate, review and subscribe to St. Jude Flashpoint on Apple Podcasts or your favorite podcast app. Learn more, donate and volunteer at stjude.org. Finding cures. Saving children.