Help Sydney Make Memories

This is little Sydney Johnston.  Sydney has been coming to our Sunday Thai school for the past 2 years with her older sister, Autumn.   She may look shy but is the sweetest little girl.  At merely 3 and a half years old, Sydney knows the meaning of giving and always thinks about others before herself.  Anytime she is given something, she makes sure that the people around her gets a little share of her gift. 

About 2 weeks ago, her mother noticed that Sydney's speech was a tad bit slurred and then she started walking funny.  Mom rushed her to the doctors and they gave her some meds.  Mom had a gut feeling something else was wrong and she was directed to CHOC where they ran some tests and diagnosed Sydney with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG) and  with 2 weeks to live OR an alternative procedure that would extend her life for another 3 to 9 months.

DIPG is a type of tumor that starts in the brain stem, the part of the brain just above the back of the neck and connected to the spine. The brain stem controls breathing, heart rate and the nerves and muscles that help us see, hear, walk, talk and eat. These tumors are called gliomas because they grow from glial cells, a type of supportive cell in the brain.

About 10% to 20% of all childhood brain tumors are DIPG or brainstem gliomas.  They are more common in children between the ages of 5 and 10 years, but can occur at any age in childhood.  300 children are diagnosed with this disease every year.  Though more rare, they can also occur in adults.

Radiation therapy — currently, is the primary therapy for newly diagnosed DIPG in children older than 3. It uses high-energy X-rays from a specialized machine or other types of radiation to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors (stop them from growing). Radiation provides a temporary response in most patients but does not provide a cure.

Unfortunately, the survival rate for DIPG remains very low. At this time there is no cure for this tumor.

We are creating this GoFundMe to help Sydney and her family through some of the medical expenses, as well as, help the family to create more happy memories in these last few months together.  Some of Sydney's wishes are simple pleasures like going to the mountain to have some snow play, going to Seaworld, the Aquarium, and to have dinner with Goofy.  As a mother, I know this is the hardest thing for Sydney's mom to go through all the while still being strong for all three of her children. 

We thank you in advanced for all the prayers, positive vibes, love, and donations you can contribute to this family.  It takes a village to raise a child and this village is here for Sydney and her family.

Lastly, to help get the word out, you can share the link to your Facebook timeline!  Khob Khun ka45015034_1579922174160068_r.jpeg


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  • Melissa Luevano 
    • $50 
    • 3 mos
  • Steven Volski 
    • $30 
    • 4 mos
  • Teerapat Kaewin  
    • $100 
    • 4 mos
  • Susan Swift 
    • $15 
    • 4 mos
  • Ricardo Arrivillaga 
    • $100 
    • 4 mos
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Serena Hongphairoch Beltran 
Covina, CA
Todd Johnston 
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