Katelyn Cox has cholangiocarcinoma (bile duct cancer). Less than 5 percent of those with it survive longer than five years, but she says she has a vvery large support group.
CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) -
A young local mother has been diagnosed with an extremely rare form of terminal cancer; now, she's getting help from an unusual group of teenage boys.
Katelyn Cox, 23, has cholangiocarcinoma (bile duct cancer). Less than 5 percent of those with it survive longer than five years.
“It's normally found in like, 60 year old women,” said Cox. “I've been the youngest that they've found so far.”
Cox has had surgery and is currently undergoing chemotherapy
When the Chesterfield Big League baseball group learned the young mother of four-year-old Hailey was fighting cancer, the teenage boys came up with a plan.
“The team has really just latched on to it,” said Jamie Prowse, the manager of the Chesterfield Big League.
“We thought the cold water challenge would be a really great idea,” said Eli Gormus, one of the players.
“You just pass around challenges to get cold water dumped on you,” said player Zach Gattermeir.
Videos of those accepting the challenge are online and many have been seen and passed around to people all over the world.
“As people accept the challenge, they're calling out other people and then they're donating money to the Katelyn Cox fund,” said Prowse.
Once a team member extends the cold water challenge, the person being challenged can accept and have cold water dumped on them plus give a 10 dollar donation. If the person declines, they’re encouraged to give 50 dollars.
“We’ve had both happen because apparently some people are afraid of a little cold water,” said Gattermeir.
That cold water has led to donations that will be used for Katelyn's chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery bills.
“It's just pretty much bill after bill after bill,” said Cox.
The team says they'll continue to raise money so Katelyn can continue to go to baseball games with Hailey for a long, long time.
“It's really humbling to see people out there helping people out and it really touches you,” said Gormus.
“It makes me smile,” said Cox. “It gives me just heartwarming feelings.”