The McCoach Family 
A family strikes gold by continuing to fight for their son. 

Meet the McCoach Family. Like any family in the world, raising children is difficult but this family is continuing to fight an uphill battle. Their 7-year-old son  Jacob  was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in 2011 . Jacob has Down syndrome, which made him 20-30 times more likely than the general population to get leukemia.
 
"Our journey with pediatric cancer began just like everyone else's...devastating," said Joy, Jacob's mom.
 
The challenge only seemed to progress for the McCoach family. Only six days prior to Jacob's diagnosis, Timothy and Joy had adopted two boys, Grayson and Luke. It was a blessing and a challenge for the McCoach family to juggle three boys. 
 
"The first month of treatment was pretty horrific because Jacob had many problems with chemotherapy. He had two seizures and lots of side effects due to the chemo," said Joy.
 
The uphill climb continued but the top of the mountain was in sight as Jacob was MRD negative at the end of his first month, which meant he had a higher chance for complete remission. 

The McCoaches spent the next 18 months as a " normal" family, getting to know their new children. Jacob returned to school and everyone did their best to enjoy the new normal.
 
In May of 2015, Joy thought Jacob was gaining weight too rapidly and so he had his thyroid tested. He relapsed on July 8, 2015. Jacob spent the next 30 days in the hospital while Joy began researching every clinical trial that he might be eligible for. 

"Part of the problem was that Jacob also has Down syndrome and many trials do not want to take people with Trisomy 21 for fear of negatively skewing their results," said Joy. 

They struck gold with the National Institutes of Health. Within five days, Jacob and Joy relocated to Maryland for two months. He was treated for refractory ALL with a new treatment called CAR-T Cell Therapy. 


In the beginning, the treatment showed promise until  one day he was in excruciating pain and could not walk. A CAT scan revealed that his hip was completely dislocated. His doctors quickly found a hip specialist for Jacob but unfortunately it did not work and as result he lives with a dislocated hip.
 
"Jacob is not only a tough cookie but a child who embodies complete joy. His smile lights up a room," said Joy. 
 
Jacob was cancer free at the end of his treatment.  We are proud to report that Jacob just returned from  his nine month post treatment appointment at the NIH and his results came back MRD negative! 

First & Gold Campaign 
Watch college football's elite teams raise awareness for pediatric 
cancer during 9 games in September. 

Teams from the SEC, ACC, Sun Belt and Big South will wear Curing Kids Cancer helmet stickers and wristbands while coaches wear wristbands, gold whistles and lanyards. September is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.

While the teams raise awareness, Curing Kids Cancer will provide funding to local pediatric cancer centers near each participating university.

"Childhood cancer research is so badly in need of funding that by supporting this awareness campaign college football teams and coaches can actually help Curing Kids Cancer to save children's lives," said Grainne Owen, founder of Curing Kids Cancer.

The campaign also has the support of ESPN GameDay commentator Lee Corso, "Mr. College Football" Tony Barnhart from the SEC Network and the "Head Ball Coach" Steve Spurrier. 

Tune in as your favorite team partners with Curing Kids Cancer during National
Dak Prescott, now Dallas Cowboys' Quarterback, sporting First & Gold apparel. 
Childhood Cancer Awa reness Month:

Duke University- October 1 vs. University of Virginia

Georgia State University- September 2 vs. Ball State

Georgia Institute of Technology- September 17 vs. Vanderbilt

Kennesaw State University- October 8 vs. Missouri University of Science and Technology

Mississippi State University
- September 10 vs. South Carolina

University of Alabama- September 10 vs. Western Kentucky

University of Georgia
- September 10 vs. Nicholls State

University of South Carolina
- October 1 vs. Texas A&M

University of Tennessee
- September 17 vs. Ohio Bobcats

Taking a Trip Down Medical Lane
Learn more about having Down syndrome and acute lymphoblastic leukemia. 

Dr. Andy Lane
Andy Lane, MD, PhD is a 2015 Curing Kids Cancer grant recipient. The research funded was at Dana Farber Cancer Institute, which is the number one pediatric cancer hospital according to U.S. News & World Report. Dr. Lane's grant went to research Down syndrome and acute lymphoblastic leukemia. 

The DNA in human cells is normally packaged into 23 chromosomes, but children with Down syndrome have an extra copy of chromosome 21. These kids are at least 20 times more likely to develop B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) than those without Down syndrome. In addition, children and adults without Down syndrome often gain an extra copy of chromosome 21 in their leukemia cells when they get ALL. Despite this strong association, there are no treatments that specifically target leukemias with extra copies of chromosome 21. 

Dr. Lane's team has developed new models of Down syndrome leukemia in the laboratory, using both human and mouse cells. To understand why the extra copy of the chromosome makes children more likely to get leukemia, Dr. Lane and his team will run a series of studies that allows them to identify and compare billions of molecules from leukemia cells. It's called "next generation sequencing" - and is a cutting edge technique. 

With support from Curing Kids Cancer, Dr. Lane and his team are using Down syndrome models in laboratory to understand exactly how the extra copy of chromosome 21 alters developing blood cells. They have already been able to use some of the information from our Curing Kids Cancer project to test new treatments that might specifically treat leukemias with extra copies of chromosome 21. Dr. Lane hopes to bring these new therapies to clinical trials in the near future. 
Go Gold in September 
Help us raise money during National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. 

During the month of September, help Curing Kids Cancer " Go Gold" for the kids.  Curing Kids Cancer's mission is to find cures for childhood cancers in our lifetime by funding innovative research and treatments.

A revolutio nary treatment that Curing Kids Cancer funds uses genetically modified cells from the child's own immune system to treat the most common type of leukemia, acute lymphoblastic leukemia. By removing some of the child's T-cells, a type of immune cell, and then re-engineering the T-cells using a virus, the T-cells then recognize and kill the cancer cells. This CAR T-Cell therapy costs $25,000 to develop for one child, and is often a final attempt effort to saving the child's life. This type of treatment is also without the harsh side effects and toxicity of traditional chemotherapy. CAR T-Cell therapy is the future of cancer treatments. 
 
Our goal for the month of September is to raise $25,000 to provide needed CAR T-Cell therapy to children and give them the gift of life.  If every Curing Kids Cancer supporter makes a donation of $5, we will reach our goal in 30 days. Make a difference in the life of a child and join our movement today. 

 
Mecum Goes Gold 
Curing Kids Cancer's partner Mecum Auctions continues to raise record breaking funds for pediatric cancer research.

Curing Kids Cancer's Mikaela Hopkins traveled to Monterey, CA to attend the
Mikaela Hopkins and helpers at the booth.
Mecum Auction to help raise money and awareness for pediatric cancer research. This year's auction raised more than $18,550 for Curing Kids Cancer! Mikaela was able to connect with new donors and share with them the importance of funding pediatric cancer research. Mecum Monterey was the only Mecum Auction held in August. The next auction in September will be in Louisville, KY. 

Paint the Town Gold 
A brave girl from South Carolina fighting her own battle wants to give back. 

The Buyck Family 
Ten-year-old Mary Catherine Buyck has been battling a brain tumor for 9 years. She wants to give back by painting her hometown of Manning, SC gold for National Childhood Canc er Awareness Month. The Buyck family will exchange gold ribbons for mailboxes  f or a donation to Curin g Kids Cancer. Their first event is on September 1st. 

We look forward to seeing Manning, SC painted gold this month. Check next month's newsletter to see the results! If you would like to host a fundraiser during the month of September, please contact Lauren Korthoff, lauren@curingkidscancer.org. 
Raise Some Gold

Help Curing Kids Cancer raise money during National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month by bidding on 4 Atlanta Braves tickets with  access  to the 755 Club. The seats are in a premier location, Box 204L. Please help us reach our goal of raising $25,000 during the month of September. 


    Upcoming Events
Steve Spurrier Book Signing
College Football Hall of Fame 
September 7, 2016

Have you ever wanted to meet the most entertaining coach in college football  history? Here is your chance to meet Steve Spurrier between 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday and have him sign your new copy of the "Head Ball Coach." Proceeds from book sales will benefit Curing Kids Cancer.

After the signing, enjoy the exhibits at the College Football Hall of Fame. During the month of September, the College Football Hall of Fame will donate $1 of every full priced ticket sold to Curing Kids Cancer. 


Mecum, Louisville
September 8-10, 2016

We are excited to see how much we can raise at the Mecum auction coming up in Louisville. If you are interested in learning more about this auction, click here  mecum.com .

If you are interested in donating a car or other auction item, please contact  Account Manager at Curing Kids Cancer, Mikaela Hopkins at mikaela@curingkidscancer.org

Atlanta Braves Childhood Cancer Awareness Game
September 10, 2016

Hit a home-run by attending the Braves  Childhood  Cancer Awareness  game on Sept. 10 at 7 p.m. Childhood Cancer Awareness is now an  MLB initiative! T he childhood cancer survivor r eception will be prior to the beginning of the game, plus an on-field parade of the f amilies  before the game .

In addition to honoring children who are battling or 
have battl e d childhood cancer, the Atlanta Braves are extending an opportunity for all Braves Fans to support the fight against childhood cancer. The $25 ticket package includ es a $5 donation to childhood cancer research. The ticket package includ es one (1) Outfield ticket and a Braves Childhood Cancer Awareness T-shirt.

Use this link to buy tickets and help Curing Kids Cancer raise money: 

In addition to Childhood Cancer Awareness Day, the Braves are auctioning off autographed gold baseballs. To place bids, click the link below. 

Crescent Olive Fundraiser Columbia, SC
September 22, 2016

The Crescent Olive on Devine Street in Columbia, SC will be hosting the 3rd annual Fundraiser for Curing Kids Cancer Thursday, September 22 from  10:00 am-8:00pm . Mention Curing Kids Cancer when making your purchase. There will also be the famous arm's length raffle as well as CKC merchandise for purchase.


See what's happening on our social sites: