The local community is coming together to give six-year old Alex Stephens a day he will remember after doctors heartbreakingly told his family he has weeks left to live.
“With a heavy and broken heart, I write this post tonight,” said mom Michelle Dimond. “The doctor has informed us that treatment is not working. He was taken off the treatment and put on hospice. We were told we only have a few weeks left with him.”
In 2022, Alex was diagnosed with Atypical Teratoid Rhabdoid Tumor (ATRT) of the brain, a very aggressive cancer.
Following treatment, Alex beat cancer (ATRT) but doctors then found the cancer has returned in his spine.
Once again he began treatment, which doctors said would be very hard on him, but on Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2023, the family received the devastating news and returned home on hospice.
“As many know, this is the second of my children to be diagnosed with an aggressive tumor cancer,” said Dimond. “Our family is hurting.”
Over the past year, many in the community have come together to support and encourage Alex through his battle and, again, are showing their love in his final days.
Family friend, Amanda Willows is now planning an early Christmas for Alex with a parade by his house including Santa, Mrs. Clause and the Grinch.
“My heart is absolutely crushed,” said Willows. “He is a little hero and inspiring to all with his strength. He deserves a early Christmas and I know how incredible our community is and they haven’t disappointed in helping with this special day.”
In less than 24 hours, Willows said a local business owner has offered to cover the costs of the funeral, Tiffany Simpson collected donations for a monument, a North Lamar ISD teacher has organized meals for the family, local photographer Kristin LaRue will be taking family photos, and many donations have been made.
‘Christmas for Sgt. Alex’ will be held on Nov. 5, 2023 at 3 p.m. with Santa, Mrs. Clause, the Grinch, Spiderman, Batman, Rudolph, Barbie, a snowman, a Elf, and dozens of local first responders delivering Christmas early to the family.
(Last year, Alex was made an Honorary Sgt. with the Reno Police Department and many refer to him now as Sgt. Alex)
“Above all, please continue to pray for him and his family through this difficult time,” said Willows. “The outpouring has been absolutely amazing.”
Anyone who would like to donate to ‘Christmas for Sgt. Alex’ can contact Amanda Willows at 903-905-1229.