Layne Pytko - Layne's Leukemia Fight

A few months ago, Layne was a regular eleven-year-old boy. He was enjoying the life he’s always loved – his family, friends, cats, school, and video games. He is a jack of all trades, likes to swim, fish, trouble shoot his teachers electronics and eat hibachi. Layne loves to make his friends laugh and loves making his younger brother and sister smile. But lately, Layne’s good spirits have been challenged as he has been given the biggest challenge of his life – to fight for it. 

Two months ago, Layne began complaining of back pain. His mom, Kellie, a single mother of two boys, took him to his pediatrician and his pain was diagnosed as a pulled muscle. He was sent to an Orthopedic doctor, who wanted to order six months of physical therapy to ease his pain. Eventually complaints turned to tears, which turned into a refusal to walk or get out of bed. His pain was so progressive his mom took him to the second Emergency room visit on March 8th, when they received the worst news imaginable and embarked on the beginning of a new journey. The results were ominous, and the follow-up confirmed the suspicions of their worst nightmare – cancer. CT scans revealed lytic lesions on Layne’s spine, ribs, and pelvic region.

He was immediately taken to Egleston in Atlanta for spinal taps, and bone marrow biopsies. The next day, Kellie was meeting with the pediatric oncologist, who explained the blood work tests that revealed Layne has high risk Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. That’s how quickly life changed forever. Untreated, it would kill him in months. Fortunately, ALL is the most common type of childhood cancer, and the long-term prognosis is positive. Layne started his first round of chemo on March 11th and he is just finishing up with his first round. He made it home on March 29th after being moved to Scottish Rite for intensive physical therapy.

April 10th was the last day of his induction period, and the news is not what everyone was hoping for. It isn’t horrible news but it isn’t what we were hoping for. His cancer did not respond as well to the chemo as his doctors hoped, so he will start another more intensive round of treatment soon. Layne has been strong and brave. He is still struggling to walk and do the normal things an 11 year old can do. He hates physical therapy but loves the support he has been getting from his family, school, and community.

Medically, he is in the best hands possible at Egleston’s of Children’s Health Care of Atlanta. The financial side of this struggle is unsettling and harder to know how to handle. Layne is in the first month of a few year’s long struggle against leukemia and while he does have Medicaid, there are still various out of pocket expenses that will exceed thousands of dollars, over time. Insurance will pay for Layne to beat leukemia but keeping his home financially stable will be much harder. Kellie is making weekly trips to Egleston for his chemo treatment in addition to giving him treatments at home. She is currently struggling to work due to his need for 24-hour care. All donations will make a major impact as his mom tries to care for Layne and provide for her family during this difficult time.

Layne is optimistic and his family is thankful for the thoughts, prayers, and amazing support and care he has received.

Thank you for all your love, faith, and generosity.


  • Danielle Smith
    • $100 
    • 43 mos
  • Tammie Duffie
    • $50 
    • 43 mos
  • April Caldwell
    • $40 
    • 43 mos
  • Sheelagh Smyth
    • $20 
    • 43 mos
  • Anonymous
    • $200 
    • 44 mos
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Breckin Lewis
Federal Hills, GA
Kellie Kay

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