Kids fighting cancer say they don’t want to be ignored

Bradley and his mom Lori participated in The \'\'Roll for the Gold\'\' Childhood Cancer Awareness Easter Egg Roll. (WTOP/Hank Silverberg)

Hank Silverberg,

WASHINGTON – As hundreds of kids participated in the White House Easter Egg Hunt Monday, a small group of people gathered across Constitution Avenue by the Washington Monument.

Many of them, like 13 year old Justin Bradley of Fairfax, are fighting cancer. Bradley is recovering from brain cancer — the scar from an operation still showing through the thin hair on his head.

Bradley and his mom Lori participated in The “Roll for the Gold” Childhood Cancer Awareness Easter Egg Roll.

Bradley learned at age nine that he had a rare form of brain cancer. He says he wasn’t doing well in school and a check-up at the doctor revealed the cancer.

He’s in remission now. Bradley is hoping more research can help other kids like him. He says childhood cancers are sometimes ignored.

“We are kids, and we usually get the hand-me-down clothes from our brothers and sisters. It feels like that,” Bradley said.

Also at the event was Tom Mitchell from Springfield, Va. He lost his daughter Shayla to cancer when she was 17, and now he runs runs a local charity that provides non-medical support for kids with cancer called the StillBrave Childhood Cancer Foundation.

He has a theory on why childhood cancers receive only 3.5 percent of all the cancer research money spent in the United States.

“Childhood cancer, the market is smaller, obviously and I think thats got a lot to do with why we aren’t getting recognition,” Mitchell said.

About 13,500 kids are diagnosed with various forms of cancer each year and seven die from it each day, according to Journey 4 A Cure, a sponsor of the event.

The sponsors of the event were hoping that some of the large crowd across the street at the White House Easter Egg Roll, would stop by on their way in or out to take a look.

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