Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation Promotional Video

Thank you for keeping Mattie's memory alive!

Dear Mattie Blog Readers,

It means a great deal to us that you take the time to write to us and to share your thoughts, feelings, and reflections on Mattie's battle and death. Your messages are very meaningful to us and help support us through very challenging times. To you we are forever grateful. As my readers know, I promised to write the blog for a year after Mattie's death, which would mean that I could technically stop writing on September 9, 2010. However, at the moment, I feel like our journey with grief still needs to be processed and fortunately I have a willing support network still committed to reading. Therefore, the blog continues on. If I should find the need to stop writing, I assure you I will give you advanced notice. In the mean time, thank you for reading, thank you for having the courage to share this journey with us, and most importantly thank you for keeping Mattie's memory alive.

As Mattie would say, Ooga Booga (meaning, I LOVE YOU)! Vicki and Peter

The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation celebrates its 7th anniversary!

The Mattie Miracle Cancer Foundation was created in the honor of Mattie.

We are a 501(c)(3) Public Charity. We are dedicated to increasing childhood cancer awareness, education, advocacy, research and psychosocial support services to children, their families and medical personnel. Children and their families will be supported throughout the cancer treatment journey, to ensure access to quality psychosocial and mental health care, and to enable children to cope with cancer so they can lead happy and productive lives. Please visit the website at: and take some time to explore the site.

We have only gotten this far because of people like yourself, who have supported us through thick and thin. So thank you for your continued support and caring, and remember:

.... Let's Make the Miracle Happen and Stomp Out Childhood Cancer!

A Remembrance Video of Mattie

October 13, 2020

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Tuesday, October 13, 2020 -- Mattie died 576 weeks ago today. 

Tonight's picture was taken in October of 2008. Mattie was in his third month of treatment, but it was before his first limb salvaging surgery. That weekend, Mattie's cousins were visiting from Boston. We all went on a walk together and Mattie and his cousins played by the flag poles near the Pan American Health Organization. Notice that Mattie was holding a toy car in his right hand! Which was very typical of Mattie. Now whenever we walk Sunny passed these flag poles, what flashes in my mind, is this very photo! 

Quote of the day: Today's coronavirus update from Johns Hopkins.

  • number of people diagnosed with the virus: 7,847,714
  • number of people who died from the virus: 215,702

Today I received this photo from my dad's caregiver. This particular caregiver is very good about text messaging me and keeping me in the loop. Which I appreciate. When I saw this photo, I had many questions. Such as when did this rash occur, what part of his body it is on, is it any where else, does it itch or burn?

Fortunately the rash doesn't itch or burn. Perhaps it is just that, a rash. But given that my dad has had everything under the sun wrong with him, my natural instinct is there's a problem! To me it looks like the early stage of shingles. As the rash is on his back and by his rib cage, both on the same side of his body. I wanted to know who else saw this rash, and apparently the in home nurse saw it and took a photo of it, but did not seem alarmed. That doesn't bring me much confidence either to be frank. So my mom is taking my dad to the dermatologist tomorrow. A doctor my dad has seen quite often recently, as he is still recovering from infected bug bites. 

My dad has taken the shingles vaccine too. Or at least the first dosage of the two shots. So one would think this would protect him from contracting the shingles. Shingles is an infection that usually produces a painful skin rash, but the painful tingling sensations which characterize the condition can also occur when no rash is present. Shingles is caused by the varicella zoster virus (VZV). VZV is the same virus that causes chickenpox, a very common childhood infection. After a person has had chickenpox, VZV remains dormant in their body for the rest of their lifetime. If the virus reactivates, which can happen decades later, most often due to a weakened immune system, the resulting condition is called shingles. Although anybody who has already had chickenpox can develop shingles, the condition most commonly affects adults, typically those over 60 years of age.

The signs and symptoms of shingles usually affect only a small section of one side of your body. These signs and symptoms may include:

  • Pain, burning, numbness or tingling
  • Sensitivity to touch
  • A red rash that begins a few days after the pain
  • Fluid-filled blisters that break open and crust over
  • Itching

Some people also experience:

  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Fatigue
I know many adults who survived the shingles, but it is important to seek treatment right away. Or better yet get vaccinated for the disease when you are 50 or older. If left untreated, shingles is more likely to result in post herpetic neuralgia (PHN), a condition in which a burning pain continues to be felt in the areas affected by shingles for more than three months after the rash and blisters themselves have disappeared. Approximately one fifth of people who are affected by shingles will go on to develop PHN. The likelihood of shingles spreading to internal regions of the body likewise increases in the absence of a promptly initiated treatment and recovery plan.

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