5th-6th Grade Young Writer winner: ‘A Family United’ by Hannah Cochran, Frankford Elementary, teacher, Amber Workman

A Family United

By Hannah Cochran

Have you or your family ever experienced or gone through a tough, emotional-filled battle? Well, I did. My grandpa was diagnosed last May with throat cancer and is still fighting his battle. That day, when I came home from school and heard the news, I was speechless. To hear the news that a strong, loving person like him was diagnosed with cancer was devastating to hear, but I had faith in him that he would beat throat cancer!

He started out with getting his tracheotomy last October after his house had burned. After he got home and got settled with his trachea, he then had to go through forty rounds of radiation and three rounds of chemotherapy. One of the toughest times was when he had to spend last Christmas in the hospital with blood clots, but we were determined that we weren’t going to let it ruin his Christmas. Instead, we brought his presents to the hospital, along with lots of love. I knew that cancer was tough, but I knew for a fact that he was way tougher.

After he got out of the hospital, he was put in ICU with four blood clots. Since he was in ICU, I couldn’t see him. That was a really tough time for me because I couldn’t let him know that I was there with him every step of the way. After about a week, he was released and then got his trachea taken out. After that was over, we thought we were cancer free. Then, we found out that his cancer had relapsed. Our family then decided it would be best to take him to Morgantown for a second opinion.

When we got there, my grandfather got some good news. The cancer had not spread and he could go through a nine hour surgery to get his voice box taken out. He would also have to stay in ICU for two weeks with a feeding tube in his nose. He has decided to do the surgery, and we should be getting a call soon on when he has to go. After this is all done and over with, he will be cancer free for good.

Cancer has brought good times, bad times, and tough times; but this cancer battle has really brought us together as a family. Two of my favorite things to say to my grandpa are: “If you get weak, I’ll be strong,” and “I’m there with you every step of the way.” If you ever have to experience someone that has to go through a tough emotional filled battle of cancer, just have faith in them.  Let them know that you care and don’t let them give up!