CORNWALL, Ontario – September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, to mark the occasion, residents are being asked to paint Cornwall gold by displaying gold colours and art on their porches and in their windows. The City of Cornwall held a flag raising on Wednesday, Sept. 1 in honour of the event and to help raise awareness.
The flag was raised by childhood cancer survivor Alex Tourangeau with the help of Mayor Glen Grant and city staff.
Alex’s mother, Cheryl spoke of her son’s experiences with his cancer treatment for Leukemia.
“We told Alex that we would do this together and we did,” she said.
She explained how the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) gives children courage beads to mark every chemo treatment, lumbar test, and other procedure.
In all, Alex received 1,152 chemo treatments, 27 lumbar punctures, and 19 blood transfusions.
Cheryl explained that it was important to raise awareness about childhood cancer because it is more prevalent than people think.
“There are so many kids who don’t get to ring that bell to mark the end of their treatment at CHEO,” she said. “What do you tell a parent who’s child is 10-days-old, or two-days-old, or 10-years-old that their child has been diagnosed with cancer.”
Cheryl said that by painting Cornwall gold, that those families who are currently struggling with childhood cancer will know that their community stands behind them.
As for Alex, it has been five years since his last chemo treatment, and at a check-up in July he was found to be in great health. Alex graduated from high school this past June and will be attending Bishop’s University in Lennoxville, QC in the fall.