2022 Ambassador: Declan
At only 20 months old Declan underwent brain surgery to remove a tumor in May 2017, and one month later he was diagnosed with Li-Fraumeni Syndrome, a cancer predisposition syndrome. Declan has endured 13 brain surgeries, 5 months of harsh chemo, numerous infections, 6 weeks of daily anesthesia/radiation, countless blood draws, MRIs under sedation, hundreds of IVs and blood draws, and 6 failed seizure medications. Recently, in December 2021, he had a right hemispherectomy—a disconnection of the right half of his brain. Declan is now a happy cancer-free 7-year-old. Read more>>
2021 Ambassador: Danica Jane
At 21 months Danica Jane was diagnosed with an Atypical Teratoid Rhabdoid Tumor (ATRT), an aggressive brain tumor. In her doctors’ attempts to stop the fast-growing tumor, Danica underwent six rounds of chemotherapy, three stem cell transplants, 25 surgeries, laser ablation, and proton beam radiation therapy. She fought courageously for three years. Through the medevacs and emergency helicopter flights to Seattle Children’s from her home in Alaska, Danica always maintained a positive attitude and joyful presence. Sadly, ATRT claims the lion’s share of lives it touches–survival rates are below 50%. Danica died March 11, 2021. Her unwavering love and sweet smile made the world a better place. We are honored to have created these one-of-a-kind votives and ornaments in her favorite shades of pink in her memory. Read more>>
2020 Ambassador: Oliver
Oliver, a wise and goofy 9 year old, was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) on February 7, 2018. Oliver and his family’s lives were changed forever.
They were shocked to learn that standard chemotherapy treatment for ALL takes three and a half years for boys, but took comfort in the fact that cure rates for ALL are usually fairly good. The five-year survival rates for “regular” cases of ALL are around 85% in the US. Seven days later, the family learned that Oliver’s cancer was “low hypodiploid”, a rare and aggressive subtype of leukemia that is difficult to treat. This high risk ALL requires more toxic chemotherapy, and has a higher rate of relapse. Oliver’s classification was switched to Very High Risk. Oliver is currently undergoing treatment with a very positive attitude. Read more>>
2019 Ambassador: Kaylee
On December 11, 2017, we took Kaylee to her pediatrician for a cough that had lingered after a bad cold. We thought she would be prescribed some medicine and head to soccer practice later that afternoon. Instead, we were immediately sent to Seattle Children’s Hospital where she was diagnosed with stage 4 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. The mass in her chest was so large it partially blocked her airway. Her medical team was amazed at the stamina and perseverance she demonstrated beginning day 1 from playing soccer, considering only a few days earlier she had been playing for both her middle school and premier teams.
After 5 rounds of chemo and 14 radiation treatments, we are thankful to say Kaylee has been cancer free since July 2018. Her recovery is taking longer than she would have liked, but Kaylee has remained committed to building her endurance and continues to maintain a warrior spirit. Read more>>
2018 Ambassador: Savannah
On September 3, 2012 Savannah woke up with yet another high fever and pain. She was only 2 ½ years old so it was hard for her say what was really wrong. Little did her parents know, but their lives would be changed forever. They took her to the ER at Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital in Tacoma, WA and learned within a few hours that Savannah had cancer. Acute Lymphoblastic leukemia to be exact. She was admitted immediately so she could get blood and platelet transfusions and start chemotherapy the next day. Savannah went into remission early and was classified low risk. She sailed through 2.5 years of treatment with minimal side effects. She rang the No Mo chemo bell on March 3, 2015. Savannah continued off treatment care and was doing amazing with life after chemo. Read more>>
2017 Ambassador: Lucy
It was Christmas Eve. Lucy’s parents knew she had pneumonia, but something else was wrong too, something worse. At 11 p.m. they got the call. Lucy was diagnosed with leukemia and needed to go to Seattle Children’s Hospital right away.
After a transplant and a devastating relapse, Lucy’s cancer was considered high risk. Thankfully, she was eligible to participate in a breakthrough immunotherapy clinical trial at Seattle Children’s funded in part by Strong Against Cancer. It was a tough fight, including a second transplant after immunotherapy treatment, but she achieved remission. The hope was that the brave 5-year-old would remain cancer free. On July 11, 2017 Lucy relapsed for the third time. She is currently in treatment again, waiting to enroll in a new cancer immunotherapy trial. This clinical trial is her only hope.
We feel that Lucy is an inspiring Friends for Life ambassador because of her perseverance through brutal illness and her family’s ongoing faith in cancer research at Seattle Children’s. Lucy’s mom says, “Strong Against Cancer means hope. It means cure. It means another chance at life for my baby girl and many other children. On this dark path, Strong Against Cancer is their light.” Read more>>
2016 Ambassador: Signe
Signe was diagnosed with stage III intermediate risk neuroblastoma in infancy. She was treated successfully with a standard Children’s Oncology Group protocol that was being studied and has since been reduced to minimize late effects.
Christmas 2016, Signe was 10 years cancer free. As a long time junior guild member and 10 year cancer research fundraiser she was the perfect ambassador to represent Friends for Life as it was also our guild’s 10th anniversary.
Signe designed her ornament to include her favorite color, bright green. She also wanted hints of the colors selected by previous ambassadors. Her design is fabulous. It is bright green with swirls and speckles of assorted colors. Read more>>
2015 Ambassador: Victor
Victor was a silly, bright, funny, passionate, curious boy who always had 100 questions for everything and everyone. He loved cars, trucks, airplanes and he wanted to be a pilot when he grew up. He loved people and loved to talk with just about anyone about just about anything! Often times he would start a conversation with someone, on his own, and somehow, he managed to charm that person in very little time. Victor was well known and well liked in our community. He was spontaneous, warm and loved hugs. He had always been healthy, happy, growing like a weed.
In July 2013, Victor was diagnosed with DIPG: Diffuse intrinsic Pontine Glioma, in the brain stem. DIPG took away Victor’s capacity to swallow, eat, smile, walk, talk, hear, or move in any way. It took away his dreams, hopes, and happiness. Along with all of ours, as well. Just as the doctors said, Victor died 11 months after he was diagnosed, on May 14th 2014. Read more>>
2014 Ambassador: Rohan
Rohan was an extremely bright and active new 7 year old, who accomplished much in just a short life span. Some of his accomplishments include mastering Mandarin language in his 2 years at a Chinese bilingual preschool, braving the intermediate ski slopes of Snoqualmie at a tender age of 3, swimming with the older kids even at 5 years, and championing his Kindergarten year with very high test scores for Math and reading. Rohan was a thinker and an avid chess player, and a huge Lego fan whose passion was not to simply follow the manual and build kits but to create his very own designs, including Star Wars ships. However, the one thing that stood out for him apart from all of this was his knowledge of the Bible and his deep childlike faith and trust in God. Read more>>
2013 Ambassador: Abi
Abi was diagnosed with Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML) when she was 15 years old in April 2011. Treatment for AML is very extensive and requires months of in-patient treatment. After treatment, she returned home to start her senior year as ASB President and Vice President of her FFA Chapter. Within the first year after treatment, Abi relapsed in Feb 2012 and received a cord blood transplant in August of 2012. It has been a long road of complications and healing, and her family felt blessed and very thankful when they passed Abi’s first year post transplant. Read more>>
2012 Ambassador: Emerson
Emerson was busy enjoying life as a 3.5 year old when her tummy started hurting and her eyes didn’t seem quite right. Emerson’s journey at Seattle Children’s Hospital officially began after two months of numerous visits to the pediatrician, eye specialist, and ER with no clear answers. Read more>>
2011 Ambassador: Owain
Owain was an adventurous, fun loving kid who loved being a big brother to Dylan (age 7), sailing, cycling, reading, hanging out with friends, playing soccer, reading, and playing video games – the usual stuff.
In December of 2009 he got a series of colds, and his energy dropped and appetite failed. Despite this he continued his cycling and training for the Livestrong Challenge. His mother and father could put most symptoms down to getting over colds, or moods, but by late February 2010 at the 32 mile Chilly Hilly road bike ride, it was clear he was changing. On March 24th, he was diagnosed with pre-B Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia. Read more>>
2010 Ambassador: Jackson
Jackson was diagnosed with Malignant Rhabdoid Tumor of the Kidney (RTK) when he was 15 months old. Between surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation, his body took a beating. He faces several long-term issues caused by treatment. Chemotherapy damaged his heart, lone kidney, and adult teeth. He struggles with life-threatening scar tissue on his intestines from the surgery and radiation. Read more>>
2009 Ambassador: Autumn
Autumn underwent approximately three years of treatment program for Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Prior to her diagnoses, Autumn was a fun-loving pre-teen who loved playing soccer. Like all of the kids Autumn experienced the extreme difficulties that come with the treatment. She experienced much pain and discomfort as the doctors try to find the best treatment plan for her. Autumn’s mom was her champion. She monitored the tough treatment program and watched the health of her beautiful daughter continually change. Autumn’s dad was deployed with the Coast Guard part of the time and was able to return home after a lengthy tour away from his family. Read more>>
2008 Ambassador: Anelia
When Anelia picked out her ornament colors she chose a rainbow of her favorites – teal, purple and pink. In 2007, Anelia underwent treatment for Osteosarcoma. Anelia’s family and friends provided her with an enormous amount of support and had an extremely positive outlook on life and her ability to overcome cancer. After her treatment Anelia returned to her home in Yakima Valley. Read more>>
2007 Ambassador: Skyler
In August 2006, Skyler was diagnosed with metastatic medulloblastoma, a type of cancer of the brain and spinal column. Metastatic medulloblastoma is a very rare type of Cancer. He started his treatment, when Natalie was finishing her initial treatment.
Skyler had the main tumor in his brain removed right away, but it had already spread to other places in his brain and spinal column. Following his initial surgery he underwent numerous surgeries, rounds of chemotherapy and 30 + radiation treatments. Skyler fought for his life with help of a great medical team and his family. His recovery was a miracle. Read more>>
2006 Ambassador: Natalie
Inspired by Natalie and the many young courageous children who undergo intense treatment, Natalie’s family and friends created the Friends for Life Guild to benefit Children’s Hospital Childhood Cancer Research. Together, we will help find a cure and make a difference in the lives of young people confronted with cancer.
Natalie was diagnosed with Acute Myelogenous Leukemia when she was 6 years old. She spent many months in the hospital undergoing treatment and achieved remission. About 18 months later, she relapsed and had to return to Seattle Children’s Hospital for treatment and a bone marrow transplant. When she first arrived at the hospital a favorite nurse was so happy to see her, and then her face just sank. She realized she had relapsed. Natalie spent her 4th grade year in treatment and home schooling to ensure she was protected from viruses. After a tough recovery, Natalie returned to normal life and became very involved in school, sports, and drama through middle school and high school! Read more>>