UTICA - Superheroes, Ninja Turtles, Minions, and other famous characters
lined the streets of Utica Wednesday evening to greet six year old
leukemia patient Brian Ford.
Ford is Battling a rare for of
Leukemia called Acute Undifferentiated Leukemia with AML
characteristics. He was first diagnosed in November 2014, but after
several chemotherapy treatments, the cancer went into remission.
However, doctors confirmed that the cancer had returned in December
According to family members, Brian has undergone, in
total, 7 rounds of chemotherapy, 6 rounds of full body radiation, 12
rounds of radiation to the left side of his face and brain, two stem
cell bone marrow transplants, and numerous blood transfusions.
a Facebook post on a support page for Brian, set up by a family member,
announced that Brian would be leaving the hospital,
"Around 9 weeks ago they gave us the news that we would lose Brian and
he would gain his wings. They told us 6 to 8 weeks max. I am pleased to
say, 9 weeks later, he is ringing in that bell and going home".
The bell ringing ceremony marks the end of cancer treatment.
a several week hospital stay at Nationwide Children's Hospital in
Columbus, Brian Participated in his second bell ringing ceremony before
leaving the hospital around 6 PM the evening.
As the van
carrying Ford and his family members arrived in Utica, it was greeted by
a police escort provided by the Utica Police Department, and costumed
characters provided by Special Events By, a company based out of Newark
that provides costumed entertainers at events.
Ford, wearing a
mask and dressed as Captain America, and his family members, wearing
orange shirts in his honor, emerged from the vehicle, giving hugs to the
A Facebook post expressed the thankful feelings of Ford's family that Brian would be coming home: "We still have a long journey but we have a lot to thankful for".