Eddie’s journey

Susanne and Peter Glanville noticed that their two-year-old son regressed to crawling suddenly. They knew something wasn’t right. With his recent temper tantrums and fussy eating, they thought he was just going through his terrible twos. But when Eddie started vomiting in the mornings, their doctor became concerned.

On Jan 11, 2018, Eddie was taken to an emergency at the Alberta Children’s Hospital and went for a CT scan. The scan gave the parents an absolute shock when it revealed that Eddie had a brain tumour. As Susanne and Peter scrambled to absorb the news, their baby boy went in for emergency brain surgery. The parents at that time relied on faith, family members, and staff at the Children’s Hospital.

That surgery would change everything. Post-surgery, Eddie experienced posterior fossa syndrome — a condition that affects balance and coordination and the ability to swallow, speak, and walk. Eddie needed immense care and his parents would take turns living at the hospital. Eddie’s older brother Luke was 6 years old at that time.

There was a lot of stress during the initial days of the diagnosis and surgery. Family was a big support for parents to take care of Luke, while Eddie was away at the hospital. After months of chemotherapy and two stem cell transplants, the cancer was finally eradicated. But they had a long recovery journey ahead of them.  

The Glanville family was introduced to Kids Cancer Care during their time at the hospital. Thanks to generous donors like you, we were able to support them every step of the way: “We were able to connect with volunteers and other families at Pizza Nights in the hospital, and over time, we started taking in more resources. Kids Cancer Care was always front and center — not just in the critical stage but as we came into a better place.”

When they left the hospital, they didn’t know how their lives were going to be. The first 8 months were the most for difficult Eddie and his family. They started with Eddie’s recovery journey. Eddie is an eager, independent, determined, fun child who loves to laugh. Through all this Eddie maintained his childhood ability to keep going. His day-to-day tasks require a lot of support and logistics but he is a determined child with a lot of potential. He is not the one to give up.

Eddy shares a special bond with his older brother Luke. And, for both the brothers, there’s no better place than camp. With the support of generous donors, the camp was able to give the boys a magical camp experience in 2019 and 2022. Now, they’re counting down the days to summer camp again.

“More than anything, they just need to be kids,” says Susanne.

Although Eddie can now swallow food, he still needs to sip his drinks through a Gtube (gastrostomy tube). He’s unable to walk or stand without support and he uses a wheelchair. While his speech is impaired, Eddie’s a great little reader and speller. If people can’t understand him, he spells out the words.

“We’re so grateful to Kids Cancer Care,” says Susanne. “The staff put so much thought and care into setting up the right resources for Eddie at Camp SunRise. It’s not often that someone can be his one-to-one aide all day, but Kids Cancer Care arranged it, so Eddie could experience camp just like the other kids.”

With your support, we are able to make our programs fully inclusive for all children. Knowing their son could experience the joys of childhood after so much pain and suffering was healing for Susanne and Peter.

“Kids Cancer Care recognizes that siblings need support too, says Susanne. “The whole family needs to heal. It’s such a lifelong journey — spiritually, socially, and mentally. When bad things happen, you have to look for the light. Kids Cancer Care is that light. All the support makes the impossible, possible.”

Thank you for making summer camp possible for Eddie and his brother Luke and the hundreds of children in Alberta impacted by cancer.