Boy With Cancer Gets A Hit

I read this one last Sunday in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, have read it a few other times, and decided I had to tell you all about it. After all, it beats the post I was going to write about the Care Bears -vs- Smurfs debate (for the record, the Care Bears would totally win).

The story is about an 18 year old boy named John Challis from Freedom, Pennsylvania (Western Pennsylvania) who has cancer and who got a shot to fulfill one of his wishes, to bat one more time in a high school baseball game. Amazingly, he swung at the first pitch, a fastball, and got a hit.

According to the article, John was told a few weeks ago by doctors that he doesn’t have much time left as the cancer that started in his liver was now taking over his lungs. This young man is amazingly strong. Just read some of his thoughts:

  • “I told my mom I still think I can get two more years.”
  • “I used to be afraid, but I’m not afraid of dying now, if that’s what you want to know,” he said. “Because life ain’t about how many breaths you take. It’s what you do with those breaths.”
  • “I guess I can see why people see me as an inspiration,” he said. “But why do people think it’s so hard to see things the way I do? All I’m doing is making the best of a situation.” “Why can’t people just see the best in things? It gets you so much further in life. It’s always negative this and negative that. That’s all you see and hear.”
  • “If I’m mad at anything in this, it’s that I’m not going to be able to have a son, I’m not going to be able to get married and have my own house,” he said, fighting back tears again. “Those are the things I’m mad about. But not dying.”

So yeah, I choked up a bit every time I read this. It’s worth reading, though, because John is truly inspirational. It makes me want to get as much out of my life as I can, because John won’t be able to for much longer.

After reading the article, check out the videos they posted on the left hand side of the article. Here is a link to one of them. Unrelated, if you ever wanted to know what a “Pittsburgh Accent” sounds like, he definitely has one. I think it’s great!