WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, and western Massachusetts communities are becoming involved with this observance.
On Friday, West Springfield Mayor William Reichelt issued a proclamation recognizing that cancer remains the most common cause of disease death among children.
Reichelt honored the memory of Riley Roman, an eight year-old boy from Chicopee who succumbed to cancer in 2012. His death gave rise to the “We LoVe RiLeY Fan Club,” which raises money for cancer research.
Twenty-five year-old Kyle Roy of Chicopee survived his childhood cancer.
“It’s been about 11 years now. I was going from the eighth grade into my freshman year of high school. I was diagnosed with lymphoma in my colon,” Roy said.
Kyle and his mother are active members of the We LoVe RiLeY Fan Club. They recognized that nearly one in 285 children will be diagnosed with cancer before their 20th birthday.
“His mom Andrea, and Riley just tugged at my heartstrings, because I had a child the same age- healthy, thank God. It can be any one of us any day,” Robin Seymour said.
The Yellow Ribbon is the awareness color signifying this battle against childhood cancer. It’s a disease that’s diagnosed every year in more than 15,000; ranging from newborns to 19 years olds.