Lake Oswego's Gage Dole, Jimmy Fowkes earn honors
Seven-year-old Gage Dole and fifteen-year-old Jimmy Fowkes of Lake Oswego have been named 2008 Community Heroes by the Children's Cancer Association for their courage and grace in the face of their serious medical challenges.
Fowkes, a junior at Lakeridge High School, was diagnosed with medulloblastoma, a malignant brain tumor in 2006.
His illness inspired him to get involved in the global fight against cancer. Fowkes has ridden in the past three Portland Livestrong Challenge bike rides and has raised more than $100,000 for the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Fowkes met and befriended Armstrong during the 2006 event.
'The challenge gave me something to work for all through treatment,' Jimmy said.
Gage Dole will be starting second grade at Hallinan Elementary School this fall. After a fun-filled summer at Camp Agape and Candlelighters Camp, Dole's leukemia forced him back to the hospital in mid-August for re-occurrence treatment and six rounds of chemo. Follow-up scans showed a questionable mass, and the Dole family now waits anxiously for the results from pathology.
'Gage is actually feeling pretty good, and he is handling this all just great,' said his mother. 'We hope he can go to school with the rest of the kids next week.'
The Children's Cancer Association announces its roster of Community Heroes each August. The exceptional group of 25 children and teens is selected from a group of 100 nominees presented by local medical professionals. Award recipients represent a diverse group in terms of age, ethnicity and diagnosis.
Community Heroes are honored throughout the year with the Wall of Courage, a traveling display that features photographs and information about each honoree.
The Wall of Courage will be unveiled this Saturday, Sept. 6, at CCA's annual Celebration of Courage Family Festival, a free event that takes place at the World Trade Center, at the intersection of First Avenue and Salmon, in downtown Portland.
The festival is a free all-ages event with live music, face painting, jugglers, arts and crafts activities and balloon art.