Cancer is a horrible word. When you hear this word associated with a loved one, it is devastating. It's also especially heartbreaking when it's associated with a 10 year old, battling cancer for the second time in her short life time.
Bailey Carson-Hilson was first diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) on March 23, 2009 when she was 4. Bailey went through more than two years of treatment, completing her last round of treatment in June 2011. She was cancer free for 18 months before being diagnosed with ALL for a second time during December 2012. During 2013, Bailey was hospitalized numerous times and underwent several months of difficult chemotherapy treatments.
"Bailey is a caring and generous kid. She never complains about having cancer and continues to give of herself to help others," said Bailey's mother, Kimberly.
Last year, Bailey was admitted to the Blank Children's Hospital Pediatric Intensive Care Unit due to complications of her liver, associated with her cancer treatment. She was then transported via helicopter to the University of Minnesota Medical Center where she underwent a non-evasive clinical trial to assist healing of her liver. Eventually Bailey was able to return to Des Moines, and she is now done with chemotherapy.
During Bailey's first round with ALL, she was able to touch the hearts of people through her fundraising efforts for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society for Blood Cancer Research as the organization's 2010 Girl of the Year and Honorary Patient. She also served as Honorary Patient for the 2011 Light the Night Walk sponsored by Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. In addition to touching lives through her volunteer work, she also touched the heart of President Barack Obama who took time to meet Bailey after he heard her inspirational story on a trip to Iowa in 2010. Recently, she has even written a book to help other children, who are facing cancer, cope and get through treatment.
"Bailey has touched and been a blessing to many people. She knows no strangers and is a friend to everyone she meets."
Bailey was selected as a Kid Captain in 2013 but unfortunately was in the hospital and could not attend the game. Her cousin, Aaron, represented her on the field. This year her mom says she is in a better place and is excited to attend the game.