Farmington Hills girl is childhood cancer hero

A Farmington Hills family has been selected as a Lemonade Days Hero Rep by the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF), a nonprofit dedicated to finding cures for all kids with cancer.

The Castel family is among 36 across the country to take a “stand” against childhood cancer during Alex’s Lemonade Days, June 10-12. They symbolically represent the 36 children diagnosed with cancer every day in the United States. Each family has been personally impacted by childhood cancer and will spread awareness about the ongoing childhood cancer fight by sharing their personal journeys.

The Castel family
The Castel family

Sarah Castel describes her daughter, Priya, as an observant chatterbox who would do anything for waffles. Priya was diagnosed in April with stage 4 neuroblastoma. Her only symptom was an unexplained fever that persisted for 12 days.

The fact that Priya can still eat, walk and play normally astounds her parents. While receiving her second blood transfusion, she looked down at the IV circling around on the bed leading up to her chest and commented, “It’s red.” Her clear observation during an uncertain time made her mother realize that instead of panicking, she should focus on the facts.

Alex’s Lemonade Days commemorates 8-year-old Alexandra “Alex” Scott’s challenge to help her raise $1 million for childhood cancer cures, one cup of lemonade at a time. With help from volunteers across the country, Alex reached her million dollar goal before losing her life to cancer in August 2004. Now every year, volunteers are invited to host lemonade stands over the course of these three days in June to continue Alex’s mission and bring renewed attention to the fight against childhood cancer.

“Just like the Castel Family, our family knows firsthand just how personal the fight against childhood cancer is,” Liz Scott, Co-Executive Director of ALSF and Alex’s mom, said in a press release. “Our daughter would be honored to know that these 36 families will continue her legacy by literally taking a stand against childhood cancer and inspiring those in their community to come together toward finding cures.”

Since 2004, more than 22,000 Lemonade Days stands have been held nationally, raising over $12 million. This year, the Foundation hopes to reach the 25,000th Lemonade Days stand. Participants are encouraged to show support through social media, by using #LemonadeDays on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and more.

For more information and to sign up to host a lemonade stand, visit alexslemonadedays.org.

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