The Heartbreak of Pediatric Cancer: Parents Share their Pictures and Stories

Michael Heras: "No one fights alone."

Cancer is an aggressive disease that requires a great deal of support for the patient. Kids who develop cancer quickly come to rely heavily on their families to help them in their battle. High schooler Michael Heras learned this all too well when he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma his sophomore year.

For most of his childhood, Michael’s only real obstacle had been his dyslexia. An avid sports fan, he enjoyed watching games as well as playing basketball for his school team. He developed a persistent pain in his leg that came and went, but multiple doctor’s visits found nothing — at first. Then, an MRI revealed a tumor in Michael’s leg, and he immediately began preparations for surgery as well as chemotherapy. On the cusp of adulthood, Michael’s osteosarcoma diagnosis froze all his future plans. It would be enough to overwhelm anyone, but his parents have helped to shoulder the burden. Although he is still fighting, Michael knows he’s not alone.

Photo: Michael Heras