A Message from Ari's parents, Dean & Alissa Gould:
As some of you may know, two years ago, in October 2009, our brave, strong lion, Ari David, was diagnosed with cancer, specifically Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, known as ALL. As strange it sounds and trust me, as strange as it has been to say: we are thankful he had ALL and not some other form of cancer. The average rate of total cure for this horrible disease is today 85%. As you know, as great as that sounds, the road has not been easy. No one should have to go through chemo, no matter how good the odds for cure. Ari is currently doing well with 12 months more of chemo. His chances are good and we hope and pray for the best.
Unfortunately, other childhood cancers do not have as high as cure rates and many of these children must undergo radiation treatments and surgery, in addition to chemotherapy. The good news is that the team of oncologists and researchers at Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center at Miller Children’s Hospital in Long Beach California, are continually studying less toxic treatments every day so that one day, there will hopefully be pharmaceuticals that just attack cancer cells and nothing else and the treatment time will be weeks rather than three years and three months; the current treatment period for boys. Other new non-pharmaceutical treatments are also being developed and studied.
Those first days, we were numb to the world. We kept asking ourselves and everyone else, Why? Why Ari; the happiest 3.5 year old in the world? Being a guy that needs answers, there just weren’t any. So we could only conclude that somehow, some way good would come out of this. What could we do to bring about some good? Like others, we decided to get involved in the fight against cancer.
Well, Ari loves music and got to see the Moshav Band when he was two.
Since then he has been obsessed with their music and requests we listen to their CD’s every time we get in my car. The idea struck us that we should put together a concert, in honor of Ari, and to raise money for the Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center at Miller Children’s Hospital in Long Beach.
We have learned a lot about many different things since this journey began and three of those things are:
You see, they are part of the Children’s Oncology Group made up of physicians around the world working in concert to cure cancers afflicting children. Of course, the work they do benefits adults indirectly as well. The studies conducted at Miller Children’s is part of even larger world wide studies. The Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center not only benefits Children in the Southern California but all over the world.
The outpouring of support for us has been overwhelming. While a small group of close friends have been cooking dinners for us weekly, many other kind friends have asked, “What can we do?”
Well, here’s something everyone can do for the South Bay, children all over the world, and the Jonathan Jaques Children’s Cancer Center. Please click here to contribute to the ALL research.
- Dean and Alissa Gould