This boy donated his hair to kids with cancer. Then he was diagnosed — at stage 4. – Miami Herald
When 12-year-old Torrin Breneman learned what cancer was three years ago, he knew he had to help.
So he decided to grow his hair out for three years, donating it to kids with cancer this May through Wigs for Kids, according to People magazine.
Now, Torrin and his family are grappling with a cancer diagnosis of their own. Just a few months after giving his locks away to kids in need, the Michigan preteen learned he has stage 4 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, according to a GoFundMe page created in his name.
Now the worst fears of Jason Breneman, Torrin’s father, have come true.
“When he donated his hair, two weeks after, I read two different articles about kids who donated their hair to cancer and later got it themselves,” Jason told Today. “I had what you could call a sick premonition that turned out to be true.
“Why do such bad things happen to nice people?”
Torrin first arrived to the hospital on September 25 after struggling with a bad cough, according to the GoFundMe page. That’s when doctors discovered the bad news, and immediately started the 12-year-old on chemotherapy.
The cancer spread quickly: Doctors diagnosed Torrin with a late-stage form of the illness, even though he had been ‘cancer-free’ three weeks earlier, according to Fox 2.
And sadly, the illness has spread throughout his body.
“He has a tumor next to his heart, which doctors say is inoperable, and he has one on each lung, his liver, his kidney, his stomach and it’s in his blood and bones,” his father told People. “He’s on so many IV drips and so many medications. He can’t even lay down straight because of the tumor in his stomach.”
Both of his parents are leaving their full-time jobs, the GoFundMe page says, to take care of Torrin, who also has a 7-year-old sister.
Torrin’s mother Carrie Breneman is providing Facebook updates from the hospital about her son’s status.
“I just want to say last night was a good night (Torrin) didn’t get a fever and he didn’t get sick,” she wrote earlier this month. “Thank you everyone so much the prayers are working. Please keep them coming and please feel free to share this post.”
The Breneman family has struggled with more than just Torrin’s illness, however.
In the wake of the tragic diagnosis, community members banded together and gave the family gifts. Burglars stole those gifts while the Brenemans were at the hospital, People reported, but the items were returned the following day after news of the robbery aired on a local TV station.
There is some good news. According to Today, Torrin’s cancer seems to be responding to the chemotherapy.
Doctors say he has about an 80 percent chance of surviving the cancer, Fox 2 reports.
In the meantime, his mother is trying to focus on the positive.
“So we were supposed to go home Friday then he got a fever,” she wrote on an October 8 Facebook post. “Yesterday he had high blood pressure. Then we were supposed to go home today but he has an infection so we are staying.
“Most (people) would be upset about being here,” she continued, “but honestly he is continually being monitored here so for me it makes me feel much safer.”