Leah James

Born: January 11, 2000

Diagnosed: July 22, 2004

Died: August 3, 2005

Happy – Sensitive – Unselfish

Mom, Karen, says: “Leah was known for always saying ‘My heart is Happy.’ She was so sweet and loving and her blue eyes would light up every room she walked into with her open mouthed smile. She always put her older sister first and always wanted to make sure she was given toys too, in fact she always wanted to pick out toys for her older sister. She loved Dora and Sponge Bob, and loved to color with bright bold colors always staying within the lines.”

Leah was always a perfectly healthy child until the age of 4, when to our surprise, she was diagnosed with a diffused pontine brain stem glioma. Leah bravely received radiation treatments at C.S. Mott’s Children’s Hospital at the University of Michigan along with homeopathic medicines, rife therapy and nutritional supplements. She rarely cried or complained but greeted everyone with her open-mouthed smile touching everyone’s heart she came in contact with. At the age of 5, 1 year and 10 days after her diagnosis, she received her wings and left a permanent mark in our hearts. To have known Leah was to love her and we have all been blessed by having her in our lives. If love alone could have saved her, she never would have died.

Mom (Karen), Dad (Phil), and older sister, Kylie, want others to know Leah’s story because: “Leah was a healthy child that walked and talked fine. In fact she was extremely smart passing her kindergarten entrance test with flying colors. It was such a shock to us that one day she had projectile vomiting and a couple days later we find out she had a brain tumor. A tumor that was inoperable which I never even knew existed. Then to find out there is no cure and nothing has worked for any of these children diagnosed with a DIPG. The world needs to become aware of the need for research and funding when it comes to pediatric cancer, in particular brain tumors. We were that couple that believed something like this would never happen to us. We attended church with all 3 of us girls dressing the same and one proud husband. This tumor robs families and can happen to anyone.”