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Brain Tumor Awareness - Our Personal Journey
Taken at the Memphis Zoo April 2005
We are the Jermyn Family and we are going to take you through our journey to Brain Tumor Awareness.  Alex was diagnosed with a brain tumor when he was eight years old.  We will start at his birth and work our way into it.  Most people think it couldn’t happen to them, but since we were diagnosed we have met many families who are going or have gone through the same thing.  First of all a Brain Tumor is a form of cancer even though it may not be malignant.  This was the hardest part for me.  I guess deep down I knew it was cancer but I didn't want to accept it.  In discussions with the doctors it was always referred to as "the tumor".  This makes it sound, for lack of a better explanation, less deadly. 

The fact is, it wasn't until recently that I was able to use the "C" word in relation to my son's tumor.

His tumor is called a Juvenile Pilocytic Astrocytoma of the hypothalamus, optic chiasm, and temporal lobe.

There is very little research done for JPA tumors since it is considered one of the least life threatening, therefore there is very little funding set aside for research for this type of cancer.

It may not be considered as life threatening as other forms of cancer, however it is life changing.  You will see how life changing in these next pages as we embark on our journey.
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