SPOKANE, Wash. - With only a few kids checked into the Oncology ward at Sacred Heart Children's Hospital, the quiet days can fuel loneliness.
That is, until you arrive at the door of 4-year-old Sam Dempsey's room.
"Sam is a very unique little man,” said Judy Felgenhauer, Medical Director of Pediatric Oncology. “Yesterday I was having a bad day and I stopped in his room because I knew it would cheer me up.”
At such a young age, Sam is no stranger to the hallways of the ward.
Sam is fighting Ewing's Sarcoma. His hospital stays are long and frequent as doctors work to fight it with aggressive chemotherapy treatments.
But that's not the only thing cancer has forced Sam to miss out on. He's going to spend Christmas in the Oncology ward.
While a Christmas spent at home would be the ultimate gift from Santa, a piece of it sits right outside of his hospital window.
The lights at Cowley Park were put up for Sam, and the many other kids that never asked to be at the hospital.
“It helps them know the community is interested in them and rooting for them,” said Felgenhauer. “Helps remind us that they are first and foremost children.”
Doctors say Sam's treatment is working. He still has several more rounds, then he'll be placed on surveillance.
As for the lights, stop by Cowley Park and check them out, they'll be up for another month.
- Work release suspended for convicted killer, former Spokane county deputy Tom Dibartolo
- University of Utah students host walkout on anniversary of Lauren McCluskey's death
- Talking about suicide: local expert gives advice on starting the conversation
- Truck drives through barbed wire fence in fatal crash near Medical Lake
- Families can soon get up to 18 weeks of Paid Family and Medical Leave
- Shoshone Co. asks for $22M to build new jail and safety facility to replace old building