On January 31st 2011 we received the news that no parent or child ever wants to hear. Our 16 yr old son Cory was diagnosed with DIPG, an inoperable and terminal brain tumor. It is an extremely rare disease with no cure & limited treatments.The average life expectancy is 9-12 months. The only form of treatment at this time is radiation and clinical trials and this needs to change!
Cory was a fun loving kid that enjoyed all the things kids do. Early on Cory took a particular interest in skate boarding and in-line skating. He quickly mastered the tricks his older brother only dreamed of landing. As he got older and frequented the skate parks, crowds of kids would gather to watch him back flip on his in-line skates or clear a stair set taller than he was. He would then some how manage to do a trick in the air on the way down. Fearless on a board! Cory also loved baseball and loved being under pressure. When he was in little league he would be brought in as a closer. This may sound funny in little league but he was effective and earned the nickname The Ice Man from one of the umpires. He could be brought in with bases loaded, still needing a couple outs and still manage to get his team out of trouble. He also loved fishing with his cousins. This is a sport I’m sure with enough time he would have also mastered. Cory also was a people person he was funny and very out going. He loved his family and friends and covered a lot of ground in a short time. Cory didn’t have a lot of friends, what he had were a lot of best friends. Because that is what you became to him. A best friend! He treated all his friends the same way. He did not reach out to you because you were popular or cool everyone was a potential best friend. Cory spent the last two years of his life fighting this horrible disease. With the same fight and determination he used trying to land a new trick He faced the new challenges thrown at him. He used the same fearless attitude that got him out of tough spots on the mound to take this disease head on. His courage was unmatched. He volunteered for drug trials knowing that they were going to make him sick. He never complained he just kept taking everything in stride. He volunteered for a surgical procedure with great risk, I’m not sure most adults would have had the courage to take on. He did all this with grace and dignity and a “NEVER GIVE UP” attitude like none I have ever seen before. On August 19th just 4 days after his 18th birthday Cory died, however his Never Give Up attitude did not. It is alive and well and will be carried on by many for years to come.