Here at Scrubs Mag, we’ve been covering Baby Liam and his family’s journey for over a year. Last August, he was diagnosed with AML (Acute Myelogenous Leukemia) on his first birthday. The family was heartbroken to discover there was cancer in his blood. He quickly underwent a bone marrow biopsy, then a spinal tap injection of chemo in hopes of preventing the leukemia from spreading to his brain and spinal fluid.
AML is a special type of leukemia in which the body produces excess immature white blood cells. It requires stronger treatment than some other types of leukemia, and operating presents numerous risks. However, the family at that point was relieved to discover the cancer hadn’t spread to his brain.
Over the past year, the family has been mostly staying at the hospital where Baby Liam was being treated. Last year, his parents had to spend the holidays in the hospital as they waited for their son to recover. Meanwhile, the medical bills kept piling up.
Just last week, Liam’s blood work looked great, and he “was totally normal”, as his parents stated on the Healing4BabyLiam Facebook page. On November 22, an update to the page explained that “no one knew his AML Leukemia had come back as a huge brain tumor.” A subsequent post that same day stated that “Liam is still on life support but his brain has not been responding…we really need a miracle but it’s not looking good.”
Now, after more than a year since he was first diagnosed, Baby Liam has passed away after coming off life support at 1 PM PST on Monday, November 23rd, as his family shared on social media. Thoughts and prayers started pouring in as his family members, friends, and even complete strangers began donating to the family’s GoFundMe account, which will go towards the cost of putting together a funeral for Liam.
Liam’s sister, Mercedez Sanchez, is the organizer of the campaign. As she wrote online, “There are so many doctor bills and everything adding up I wanted to help by creating this fund. My family is very hard working, but things have not been easy, and I just want to say thank you for your prayers, support and anyone reading and sharing our story.”
The money is also being used to support the family during this difficult time. Losing a child can be painful in so many ways. It increases the risk of mental illness and other serious health conditions that can lead to death. Bereaved mothers are more likely to be diagnosed or hospitalized during the first year after they lose their child than at any other point in their lives.
As the family says goodbye to their son, we are wishing them the best as they make this painful journey. Consider donating whatever you can to their campaign to ease their burden.