Stand fior Faith
- Sunday, Sept. 1, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
- Sanborn Elementary School
700 N. Superstition Blvd., Chandler
Map: Stand for Faith
Sanborn Elementary School
CHANDLER, Ariz,. -- It's every parent's nightmare. Your child is sick and there is nothing you can do to make him or her better. Of course, it's inevitable that kids get sick. Colds. The flu. A tummy ache. An ear infection. These illnesses are a part of every parent's life. As unpleasant as they can be, they are benign compared to some of the nefarious diseases other parents encounter. For some, it's muscular dystrophy. For others, it's cystic fibrosis. The list of possibilities goes on.
For Becky and Chandler Moore, it's cancer -- bone cancer, a Ewing’s sarcoma to be specific. When their 11-year-old daughter, Faith, started limping a bit earlier this month, they didn't really think anything of it. They certainly did not consider cancer.
"It was barely noticeable at first and we thought she was just trying to walk with that teenage swagger," Becky Moore wrote on FixFaithsFemur.com. "Chandler and I would ask her to walk straight, but after a week Faith admitted that it was beginning to hurt."
Tests were performed. Results awaited. The Moores' dread grew, coming to a head when Faith's doctors broke the news, making the nightmare their new reality. Faith had a lesion on her left femur and it was cancerous.
"How could our beautiful, talented, loving, baby girl who was liked by all of her teachers, loved by all of her friends and adored by all of her family have something as nasty and vile as a lesion on her leg?" Moore wrote.
Ewing's sarcoma mainly affects children older than 10, teens and young adults. While it's the second most common bone cancer in kids, Ewing's sarcoma is fairly rare, accounting for just 1 percent of all childhood cancers. According to WebMD, about 200 cases are diagnosed each year.
There is, believe it or not, a bright side to the Moores' story. Two, actually.
First, treatment for Faith's disease -- surgery and chemotherapy -- can be very effective.
Faith has already undergone her first round of chemo. She's in for round two this weekend. She'll endure more treatments in the coming months and then, if all goes as planned, will have surgery in the fall. After that, more chemotherapy.
It will be a long road, but the odds are in Faith's favor.
"Statistics say she has an 80 to 90 percent survival rate, but Chandler and I can’t help but realize that also means she has 10 to 20 percent NON-survival rate," Moore wrote on FixFaithsFemur.com.
While that relatively small but completely terrifying percentage is always hovering in their minds, the Moores are focusing on the positive. Which brings us to the other bright side to this story, something the Moores are learning.
"We are loved!" Becky wrote. "[T]he friends we knew loved us love us more than we ever imagined and the friends we didn't know we had, love us, too!”
Those friends are doing whatever they can to support the Moore family. And it's not just the adults.
Kady, Jack, Sam, and Faith when the Moore and Funicello families vacationed together in Rocky point last fall
Jack and Sam Funicello, the young sons of a dear family friend of the Moores, decided that they wanted to host an event to help support Faith and her family. They've teamed up with other neighborhood families – Faith’s friends and classmates -- to host a lemonade stand and bake sale.
Cancer is an expensive disease to beat and every penny raised this weekend will go to help cover Faith's medical expenses.
Although the family has what Becky calls "great insurance," it doesn't cover everything. There are always out-of-pocket costs, and they add up. Fast. The Moores will soon be receiving bills totaling tens of thousands of dollars.
That's why the Funicello boys have stepped up to the plate, masterminding Sunday's event, Stand for Faith.
“The reason I'm doing this is because Faith is a good friend and I know for a fact that if I had cancer she would do something like this for me,” Jack, 12, said.
Sam, 7, agreed.
"Faith is a good friend and I want her to be healthy and live for a long time,” he said, telling his dad he hoped the Tooth Fairy brought him $100 for his recently lost tooth so that he could give the money to Faith.
The boys' event has taken off in big way.
Their mom, Amy, put the word out on Facebook and said the response was immediate. And extremely encouraging. People who can't Stand for Faith in person are buying “virtual glasses of lemonade” to help support the Moores.
“I think this event is extra-special because it started from the ideas of kids,” Funicello said. “The moms are in full-on helping mode, but the kids are the ones who wanted to help and decided to do a bake sale.”
Funicello said other neighborhood families did not hesitate to pitch in.
“After the boys talked to me about this, I reached out to a couple of other neighborhood friends whose kids are friends with Faith and her sister, Kady,” she said. “All of them are helping bake. The kids are helping to make signs and man the table on Sunday. One of the dads designed a flier. Another one of the families paid to have them printed up and cut, and more of us will be fliering cars this evening and tomorrow.”
Stand for Faith is the perfect example of the amazing things kids can do given the opportunity and a little bit of grown-up support.
"A simple gesture by the Funicello boys to have a lemonade stand/bake sale has snowballed into a newsworthy event!" Moore wrote on her blog.
“I don't know if I'm prouder that my kids had the idea to do this fundraiser or that this movement is becoming what it is,” Funicello said.
Stand for Faith is Sunday, Sept. 1, 1 p.m.-4 p.m., in front of Sanborn Elementary School, 700 N. Superstition Blvd., Chandler.
To follow Faith’s progress or to make a contribution online, visit FixFaithsFemur.com.
Sunday's Stand for Faith bake sake and lemonade stand raised nearly $6,000. That total came from the event alone, and does not include contributions that were mailed or made online.
Faith's parents, Becky and Chandler, at Sunday's fundraiser
Co-organizer Jack Funicello at Stand for Faith fundraiser