Leukemia Patient Receives Help from TX Community

When Ivan Garcia was asked this Christmas season what was on his wish list, he replied with an answer that was anything but typical for a 13-year-old boy. He told his family he wants a couch. One that he can eat and sleep on if he wants. Not a typical request, but then again for someone who has spent the last few months in a hospital, a comfortable couch at home may just sound completely normal.
Garcia was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, which is a cancer that affects the white blood cells, in late August. Since this time, his mother, two sister and brother have joined together to do all they can to help and support Ivan. And they have done all they can to ensure Ivan is comfortable and relaxed for the few days he is allowed home from the Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston.
What Causes Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia?
For years researchers have been studying the causes and effects of various forms of cancer, including leukemia. Although a cure for cancer has yet to be found, there are now many treatments available and many believe that we are closer to finding a cure for this life-threatening illness.
There are many things that have been linked to leukemia and are deemed to be the cause of this cancer. For example, exposure to harmful chemicals like benzene has been known to cause leukemia and other forms of cancer and in some cases the illness seems to be hereditary. However, doctors are still trying to determine the cause behind Ivan’s sudden health problems.
Community Helps Family in Trouble
The Garcia’s recently discovered that their home has been sold and they must move into a nearby trailer park. However, when Ivan was diagnosed and had to be hospitalized their move was delayed; though after Hurricane Ike hit, their home was nearly destroyed and they are now living with cracked walls and floors. Now, Dorothy Kelley, chairman of The Tony-Frankin Foundation has begun assisting the family and recently joined the community together to start Project Ivan: Home Makeover.
With the help of many others, Dorothy is gathering donations from various groups and organizations to help rebuild the Garcia’s home and help them financially so they are able to keep their home.
“I am thankful for all the help I am getting,” says Ivan.

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