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Fundraiser supports boys cancer battle
Will to Win 5K at Lambert
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Forsyth County News

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Will to Win 5K

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Lambert High School, 805 Nichols Road
8 a.m. Saturday, registration begins at 6:45 a.m.

Will Abernathy hopes to wear his Halloween costume, a knight in shining armor, during the Will to Win 5K run fundraiser in his honor Saturday.

The 3-year-old Forsyth County boy didn’t get much of a chance to experience the occasion last year because it was about that time a doctor diagnosed him with stage 4 neuroblastoma.

Neuroblastoma is a cancer developing from nerve cells in the body, which typically affects children 5 and younger.

Abernathy has undergone several treatments since the diagnosis and recently began a clinical trial, said his mother, Melody.

"He’s doing great on it," she said. "His last scan, which was a couple of weeks ago, shows slight improvement."

Through the family’s difficult year, Melody Abernathy said her son has showed few signs of sickness.

"He’s full of energy, all over the place," she said. "I don’t understand how he can have all this cancer in his body and feel no pain."

The boy plans to participate in a 1K fun run with his preschool classmates Saturday, as well as enjoy the festival activities.

The 5K is set for 8 a.m., and the fun run for 9:30 a.m. at Lambert High School.

Nearly 200 people have registered so far, and Melody Abernathy said she wouldn’t be surprised if a couple hundred more showed up on race day.

The post-run events will include a bake sale, concessions, and several childrens’ activities, such as face painting, inflatables, pony rides and more.

"I’m wanting it to be a really big day for Will," Melody Abernathy said.

Her son was the first beneficiary of the locally based nonprofit, Kidz Cancer Fund, and the family has been involved with several community events to raise money for medical bills.

Since the organizer of that group has not been involved with this event due to personal circumstances, Melody Abernathy said she’s taken the helm with the help of her church, friends and family.

"The community has been behind us the whole way," she said. "Everyone wants to help a child with cancer, especially when it’s one of your own. We always knew this was a great place to live. Now we know just how true that really is."