Oliver Strong died at 12 from acute myeloid leukemia. A healthy and vibrant young boy, he is one of the 50% increase of pediatric cancers from 1975 to 2015. His parents set up the Oliver’s Forever Strong foundation and have partnered with Texas Children’s Hospital and Baylor College of Medicine to launch an ambitious research project in the pursuit of why Oliver died and how can other children be saved.
Oliver Strong was a 12 year old vibrant, dynamic soccer player—healthy as can be. He died June 2015 at Miami Children’s Hospital just 36 hours after doctors diagnosed the disease reports the Taipei Times. Oliver’s parents started investigating pediatric cancers and they uncovered some disturbing trends.
Skyrocketing Pediatric Cancer
In the U.S., pediatric cancer has increased by almost 50% from 1975 to 2015. Last year, up to 16,000 children from birth to 19 years old will have received a diagnosis. A troubling reality Oliver’s parents faced (and many other parents that have lost their children) is that they may well have lost Oliver to the role of carcinogenic environmental toxicants, including industrial waste and pollutants.
Oliver’s parents set up “Oliver’s Forever Strong foundation which has now teamed up with the Texas Children’s Hospital (U.S. largest pediatric cancer center) and the Baylor College of Medicine.” The collaborative have set up a website and they will harness social media to help collate information from a wide geographical spread.
The study will engage with families that have been through their own tragic experiences of childhood cancers. The study will seek information including the manifestation and progression of the cancers as well as demographics.
Patient-Centered in Nature
The study has been designed to work with patient/families where they are located. For example, families who might not live near one of the existing study centers can participate in the comfort of their home, reports Michael Scheurer, Director of the Childhood Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention Program at Texas Children’s Hospital.
Dr. Scheurer continued, “We realize individuals won’t know if they’ve been exposed to certain chemical or specific agent so we try to gather an overview of their environment, where have they lived over the course of time, when the childhood was conceived, during mom’s pregnancy, during early childhood, up to the point they developed their cancer. Are those residences located near Superfund sites, or in areas with high levels of air pollution or water contaminant’s.”
Trial Site News Request: Support this Trial
Oliver Forever Strong is a critically important study. Visit www.thereasonwhy.us and learn how you can participate—whether it is sharing some relevant information or contributing financially. With 16,000 youth expected to be hit by cancer—in many cases deadly—is a wake up call for us all to understand what is in our environment and what can we do to better protect our children.