“He has the ability to show an entire community how to have a true passion for life, and how to stay strong.” This was how Defiance College basketball star, and Wauseon graduate Wade Wooley described the personality of his younger brother Thane.
Thane is a 12 year old Wauseon student, who enjoys playing basketball, video game, and chowing down on his mom’s home cooked meals. You wouldn’t know it by how he acts and how he lives his life, but Thane has had an on going battle with a serious medical issue. At only four years of age, Thane was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma, a type of cancer where nerve cells improperly form and grow in to cancer cells instead. Since being diagnosed, Thane has relapsed four times, most recently in August of 2013.
The treatments that Thane go through are both painful and costly. The cost of the treatments and medicines, along with the travel expenses that are accumulated going to and from the doctors visits, add up. Over the course of the eight years since Thane’s original diagnosis, the bills have continued to build.
One of the great benefits of living in a close-knit community is knowing that others will always be there to help those in need, and this case was no different. Friends, family, and community members from throughout the area gathered to help alleviate some of these costs, as a benefit was held in honor of young Thane Sunday afternoon at Crossroads Church in Wauseon. A spaghetti dinner was served to the hundreds of guests in attendance. Many items were being raffled and auctioned off, cookies and cakes were sold, faces were painted, and a photo booth snapped pictures of visitors, with all the proceeds from these stations going to the family to help offset the bills that come from the treatments that help Thane fight his disease.
The support from the community means is much appreciated by Thane’s family. “To think that an entire community would care and love this kid as much as they do feels amazing.” Thane’s brother Wade said “It makes our situation a thousand times easier to know we aren’t alone. The encouraging words and prayers mean the most. It means more than I’ll ever be able to express.”
If you were not able to make it out to the benefit, you can still donate to the cause by contacting Tanja Ringle, the director to the benefit. She can be reached my emailing her at firstname.lastname@example.org, or calling her at 419-367-4024. Donations will still be gladly accepted.
Thane continues to fight day in and day out against this awful disease, and is a reminder to us all that life is valuable. We should all strive to live our lives in the way that Thane does. With passion and vitality, even in the face of adverse situations. Thane is proof that you do not have to be tall for people to look up to you.