Wish granted for young cancer survivor thanks to community support
BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Under the stern gaze of Louisiana State Troopers, fifth graders from Central Intermediate School filed into their gymnasium for a Friday assembly.
They weren’t told why they were gathering, but the reason soon became clear. The troopers had heard how students were treating a classmate named Avery Jobe.
After quieting the students, a school administrator called Jobe to the center of the floor. She was soon joined by Trooper Chase Huval who addressed the room.
“I’ve heard a lot of good things about all of you. How supportive you’ve been of little Avery,” said Huval.
Ten-year-old Jobe, has been battling a Wilms tumor for the last five months. The cancer usually develops first in the kidneys and can quickly spread. She underwent surgery and 18 weeks of chemotherapy at the St. Jude Clinic inside Our Lady of the Lake Children’s hospital. She finished treatment just last week.
”I never really thought about how bad chemo could be once you actually experience it. It’s very frightening to hear the words,” said Jobe.
The diagnosis was equally scary for her parents, Emily and Matthew Jobe.
“I felt helpless for sure as a father, wanting to like Emily said, fix things, and you can’t fix it,” said Matthew Jobe.
Through the chemo, the Jobes watched their daughter lose her hair and struggle with the treatment’s often harsh side effects. However, the say she never once complained and finished treatment just last week.
“I would hope that I could be that strong if something happened to me,” said Jobe’s mother Emily.
“It’s kind of a special moment when you’re done with chemo, it’s very life changing,” said Jobe.
It also helped that the Jobe found a community of support inside her school. While at times she could only attend class for half a day, Jobe said her friends rallied around her, supporting her through every turn of treatment and lifting her up when she was feeling bad.
“That really touched me to see that these kids are supporting each other like that and not bully each other and that’s something we try to come to these school and talk about,” said Trooper Huval.
Huval heard about Jobe’s battle through his son who attends the same school. Huval also happens to be the local chapter president of the Louisiana State Trooper’s Association, a non-profit that supports kids or families in need.
Inspired by her fight and the support of her friends, the association partnered with the Dreams Come True organization and the Bella Bowman Foundation to grant Jobe a special wish, a weeklong trip to Disney World with her family.
They presented the trip with help from a few Disney characters during the assembly, in front of all Jobe’s friends and classmates.
”It’s overwhelming. It makes you proud of the community, of the state, of all the different groups and associations have reached out. I knew the schools would be supportive in the beginning, just didn’t realize what that would mean, and it’s been way more than I could even wish,” said Emily Jobe.
Jobe said the first ride she wants to ride is Tower of Terror.
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