■ BY SUE ERWIN
Boca Grande resident Diane Todd and her sisters, Trisha and Judy, wish to thank the community for their support of Diane’s 3-year-old granddaughter, Zoe Guy, A few months ago, when Zoe experienced a common cold that just wouldn’t go away, her mother, Amber Todd Guy, took her to get her white blood counts checked. “I never thought I would be told she has leukemia,” Amber said.
Zoe was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at Brenner Children’s Hospital in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, where the family currently lives. Island residents Trisha Lowe and Judy Lowe are Zoe’s great aunts. The family has lived on the island for three generations. Lowe said that after doctors did three bone marrow biopsies on Zoe, they found her fluid had solidified, and they had to chip into her hip and do a spinal tap.
“She has a port installed in her chest and she is getting chemotherapy once a week,” Lowe said. But the good news recently is that Zoe is in remission. In a 500-cell sample, Zoe had zero cancer cells. “We are waiting on results from a study she’s in, where they have the equipment to see thousands of cells, which will give us a better idea of how many cancerous cells are still there,” her mom said.
If the numbers are still low, Zoe will remain in the low-risk category. She will still have to endure about two years of treatment to reach long-term remission, but it won’t be as intense. However, along with the treatments, medical bills are starting to pour in.
“We hit our max out-of-pocket for the year, and unfortunately it is the end of the year, so a new one will start soon. I’m using the money people graciously donated to pay some of these bills,” Amber said.
Todd works at Englewood Bank in Boca Grande. An account has been set up in Zoe’s name at the bank located at 301 Park Avenue on the island to help the family with medical costs.
Jeremy Cunningham is also accepting donations for the cause at PJ’s Seagrille, where he is a bartender. Jeremy’s wife Jenny is the sister of Tommy, Zoe’s dad. “All donations will be greatly appreciated,” the family said. Acute lymphoblastic leukemia is the most common and most treatable form of childhood cancers.
The treatment will take up to two years, but medical specialists feel that Zoe will win the battle.
Please make checks payable to Amber Guy. There is a Gofundme account set up to help the family with medical expenses. “We’d also like to thank everyone for their prayers and support,” Diane said.
Keep reading the Boca Beacon for further updates.
For more information, visit gofundme.com