The story behind Adams Army starts with an amazing story of a young man named Adam Cripps.
He was born August 20 1998, a beautiful, healthy little boy. Just before his first birthday, it became evident that there was something wrong. At just 13 months old, he was diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma, a soft tissue tumour. With an aggressive treatment plan, he fought hard and became cancer free. The cancer returned 6 months later and the outcome was grim. With only a 10% chance to survive, Adam went off to Calgary to receive a stem cell transplant-the last hope.
He surprised even the doctors and beat the disease. Short a bladder and a prostate, he went in too remission and went on to live a somewhat normal, toddler life.
In 2006, Adam found a lump on his left femur. With cancer in his past, it was best to get it examined and sure enough, cancer. Diagnosed with Osteosarcoma, the cancer was found early. He underwent chemotherapy to ease the growth and he prepared for amputation of his leg. In April of 2007, he celebrated his final treatment at the Stollery Childrens Hospital and continues on with his young life.
June of 2013 and something wasn't right. He went in for a check up to rule out cancer, and they found the tumour. Stage 4 colon cancer with metastasis in the lungs, liver, and bones. Terminal.
There was nothing anyone could do. We would lose him to this disease. This would be the last time he got diagnosed and it was time to say our goodbyes. He beat the predictions from the doctors that his time would only be a few months, he spent the next 16 months fighting for his life. His courage and strength would bring him to November 27 2015 where his family was beside him for his last breath. He was at peace. He didn't have to fight anymore. He could rest.
Adam's story is nothing but inspiring. Defying the odds was his middle name and the doctors would say he even shocked them. None of us thought that we would ever have to live our llives without him in it, but with no choice of our own, we have to now. Cancer stole him away from us. We watched him fight. We watched his family struggle. And we watched his strength and courage inspire so many people, even strangers that had only heard of his story.
Adam wanted to be a doctor so he could cure cancer. With so many other charities and foundations donating money to research, the family decided that we know all too well how hard it is to deal financially while a family member is going through treatment. We were always trying to find new ways to raise money for Adam's family so they could spend the necessary time at home or in the hospital with him to support him during his treatment. It always seemed very hard, if not impossible, to achieve this without fundraising. With the support of family, friends, and even strangers, Adam's family survived the financial hardship of this horrible disease.
Just hearing the word Cancer is stressful but then you add the financial and mental aspects that come with it and it's a recipe for disaster. We know all too well how hard it is and by keeping true to our word to sweet, young Adam, we will continue to support families like his.
The world is a scary place and cancer is scarier... But there's NO such thing as an army of one.