Tyler's journey started in January 2013. He was having difficulty with balance and just wasn't his normal self. Sports that he loved to play were becoming increasingly difficult, with routine things like playing catch, being harder than they should be.
In December 2012, Tyler and his brother had bumped heads playing football, hitting each other hard enough to knock out Tyler's front tooth. Hoping Tyler was suffering from some
lingering issues from that accident, his parents took him to the emergency room at Phoenix Children's Hospital on February 8, 2013. They arrived at the hospital at 10:00am and within a short couple of hours Tyler was diagnosed with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG), or more simply put, a tumor in the pons area of the brain stem.
Just after Tyler found out about his diagnosis, he was shaken, as was the entire family. Tyler's mom left the room to call her parents, and while she was gone Tyler and his dad talked about his diagnosis and the road ahead - it would be difficult. Tyler was asked what we thought he should do, and he said, 'Whatever it takes."
Tyler fought courageously for seventeen months, but at 9:23pm on July 13, 2014 he took his last breath. He was only fifteen years old. He is greatly missed and leaves a huge whole in our lives that will never be filled. However, he taught us lessons that will last into the eternities. He taught us how to really live, how to believe, how to fight, and ultimately how to die. He inspired countless thousands with his smile, positive outlook, and his whatever it takes spirit.
Throughout his battle with DIPG, Tyler experienced more pain and suffering than most people will see in a lifetime. He lost the ability to move his left side shortly
after diagnosis, and by the time he passed away he was completely paralyzed and could not speak or swallow, and he went blind the day before he died. Yet, he approached each day with a smile and positive outlook. Tyler never gave up in his fight against DIPG, now it's out turn to do whatever it takes to find a cure!
To read more about Tyler's journey please click here...Whatever It Takes: Life Lesson's From a Real Superhero.