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This fundraiser ended on 06/17/12

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The family and friends of Cody Jones are uniting to raise money to help with his battle against T-cell Lymphoma. Please show your support!

Dakota (Cody) Jones was diagnosed with T-cell Lymphoma on Saturday, May 5, 2012.

Cody is a gentle spirited, fun loving 13 year old boy from North East, Pennsylvania. He is thoughtful, patient, polite, and has a heart of gold! He lives with his mother, Heather, father, Jake, and two little brothers, Dawson and Maddox.

He recently became ill with what they thought was routine bronchitis. After several weeks of not feeling well Cody's mother insisted that her family doctor schedule Cody another appointment.

That was Wednesday, May 2nd.

At that appointment a chest xray was done and Heather and Jake were told to immediately bring Cody to the ER. A cat scan done there revealed "a mass" on Cody's heart. He was sent via ambulance, with his mother by his side, and his father driving swiftly behind them, to Childrens Hospital of Pittsburgh. The following somber morning at 5am after being awake all night his parents were called into the hall and told the news that no parent ever wishes to hear: their child has cancer.

That was Thursday, May 3rd.

For two long days Cody endured many tests. He was poked and proded from every angle by roomfulls of doctors and nurses. His parents sat anxiously and helplessly by his side, never leaving even for a moment. After having a bone marrow biopsy that ruled out leukemia, Cody and his parents were told that he has T-cell Lymphoma.

That was May 5th.

Since then Cody and his parents have been bombarded with information, so much so, that I, even as a nurse, have had a hard time keeping up. Through all of this, Cody has not once lost the smile that always adorns his face from ear to ear.

My husband and I had the pleasure of spending the day he was diagnosed with him and his parents. If we did not know any better, we would not have been able to tell he was sick, let alone told only hours earlier that he has cancer. He has been stronger than almost any adult I know, including myself. I believe he is teaching his family, friends, and myself that it's not what happens to you, but how you react to it that matters.

Cody is, as I am typing this description, receiving his first round of chemotherapy. In a picture snapped with his mother as the therapy is begun, Cody is still smiling.

Today is May 7th.

The good news is that the odds are in Cody's favor for fighting this particular form of cancer. The bad news is that he has a very long and grueling path ahead of him. He is going to have bad days, good days, and even worse days.

He will lose his hair. He will not be able to do the things he enjoys such as fishing and rough housing with all the boys. He will not be able to attend his school for the rest of this year and most likely the begining half of next year. It will be a different life for him and his family, something they never thought they would ever have to deal with.

Cody's doctors aren't sure how long he will be in treatment, but it is safe to say, years. After completing one week of daily IV chemo, Cody will be on oral chemo at home with weekly trips to Pittsburgh for IV chemo for at least six months. As he begins to respond to the chemo those intervals may get longer.

Cody's parents are self employed and do not have the luxury of vacation, sick time and family leave. Although Cody is one of the lucky children to have health insurance, there is no way of knowing what other medical bills he will incur in the coarse of his treatments. The travel expenses alone will reach thousands in less than six months.

The online fundraising will be open until until June 17th so there will be sufficient time to collect all donations. The proceeds from this online fundraiser are a precursor to the benefit, Cody's Cause for Cancer, being held on June 30, 2012 from 2pm to 10pm in North East, Pa, at the Gravel Pit Park. The hope and plan is to be able to present Cody with the the fundraising goal amount, or more, on that day.

We can't change this disease, but we can change how Cody and his family can fight it! Thank you all for your donations, support and most importantly prayers. We do believe in miracles and we pray for one each day.
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