The 2021 Champion
Christmas used to be one of the Burton Family’s favorite times of the year. Whether it was the food, opening presents, playing games or sharing stories of past Christmas’s it didn’t matter, all that mattered was that they were with the ones they loved most, everything else just seemed to fall into place.
The joy of Christmas is still there but it has seemed to have lost its luster that it once had, that is because December 26th , 2018 was the day Blake (four years old at the time) was emergency airlifted to Lurie Children’s Hospital. On Christmas 2018, Blake was acting a bit lethargic which was a bit odd for the youngster. Blake being the youngest of four siblings was typically chomping at the bit to open presents but not this season. Blake passed at opening presents and rather wanted to relax on the couch and watch his favorite cartoon. Blake’s parents thought it might be a virus he is going through and didn’t think that much about it.
The next day, Blake had mentioned he had some back pain and was still acting a bit strange so needless to say his parents made the decision to take him to the Doctors office. This was the day their lives changed forever; Blake was diagnosed with advanced leukemia the day after Christmas. Hearing the dreadful news was devastating.
Blake Burton is now six years old and still fighting for his life. In two years, Blake has endured more suffering than anyone should go through in their lifetime let alone an innocent child. He should be out playing with friends, scraping his knee, climbing trees, catching frogs, eating too much candy but he is not. Sadly, Blake spends most of his time getting poked or pricked.
In July 2020, Blake was allowed to leave the hospital and relocate temporarily to the Ronald McDonald house. In early August 2020, he was allowed to return home and with the help of his beloved Aunt Suzie he was able to raise +$400.00 dollars at a Lemonade Stand they had setup. Guess what Blake did with that money? Yup, you guessed it. He donated it to the cancer floor of Lurie Children’s Hospital. On August 31 st , 2020 we received the best news yet – the test results came back from the bone marrow and lumbar procedure and Blake was cancer FREE!!
As Christmas arrived in December 2020, we were reminded of that night, the night our
world was flipped upside down. Just like that it was back, our worst fear…Blake’s cancer has returned. Blake is now about to go toe to toe with cancer for the fourth time. We pray this is the last fight. Blake has been through countless chemotherapy and radiation treatments, emergency surgeries, spinal taps, a bone marrow transplant, weeks in the ICU on a breathing machine, daily needle pokes and COVID-19 tests but through it all the kid never seems to stop smiling!
In July 2021, Blake had another bone marrow replacement in July which was successful. He is cancer free at the moment but constantly dealing with checks and med adjustments to make his body continues to accept the transplant. He is starting first grade this month. “He wants to play golf, take karate, eat s’mores everyday and play with all his friends!”
Blake has the heart of a warrior and the determination of a CHAMPION. He is kind, selfless, funny, courageous and an inspiration to all of us. Blake was given a choice and he has chosen to fight! He is not ready to give up! We stand behind Blake every step of the way. WE BELIEVE IN BLAKE!