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Can you imagine being 13 years old and told you have a 50/50 chance to live?

Meet Nolan

That is exactly what happened to Nolan and his family not long ago. Nolan woke up with a sore and swollen foot only to be told by a local urgent care facility that it was probably just a bug bite.

But, when his other foot began to swell, they turned to UNC Children’s for help. Testing quickly determined that it wasn’t a bug bite, it was Acute Myeloid Leukemia , the most aggressive type of leukemia there is.

Just after Thanksgiving Nolan looked at his mom and bravely made a promise: “Don’t worry Mom, I’m going to beat this.” And for the next six months, he fought to do just that!

His room at UNC Children’s became an epicenter of hard work and hope, decorated with banners, posters and lots of orange – the color of leukemia awareness. “The room was a fun place to be,” Nolan’s mom said. “We got really close with everyone and had the most incredible care you could ever dream of.”

Nolan and his family celebrated Christmas and rang in the New Year on the floor. Valentine’s and St. Patrick’s Day, too. They even hid Easter eggs for all of Nolan’s nurses. But just weeks before his treatment was set to end, Nolan developed a fever of 105 and began to hallucinate. He had contracted a serious infection that often proves fatal in children with leukemia.

But Nolan beat his leukemia –just like he said he would! He’s home now and getting stronger. His mom said it best: “It was horrific news and lots of fear, but at the same time it was one of the most beautiful experiences I’ve ever been through. You saved my son’s life.”

September is Childhood Cancer Awareness month and we invite you to help to ensure that UNC Children’s is always prepared to help children in the future. Your gift today will help young patients like Nolan and their families.

Help Kids Like Nolan!