Aspen was only a year and ten months old when she was diagnosed with stage 4 neuroblastoma. She underwent treatment in the Philippines, but six months later, the cancer was spreading again. Next, with a referral to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, her family traveled to the United States for the first time. "When they told us that everything will be free, it was like a thorn was taken away. At first it's unbelievable. We didn't expect anything like this. We were so grateful," said her dad.
Even undergoing cancer treatment at St. Jude, Aspen remained bubbly and happy and playful. But her parents found that they were changed. "It changed my perspective about life," reflected her mom. "There's so much kindness in the world. It's inspiring in a way that it challenges us, the recipients of this kindness, to give back."
Now the focus is on living each day to the fullest, with a sense of gratitude. "St. Jude saved us. It saved the family," said Aspen's dad. "St. Jude is a gift."