A dream revisited

Tuesday, December 16, 2003 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 12:36 a.m. CDT, Saturday, July 19, 2008

An empty hallway lit by fluorescent lights cuts through the ninth floor of St. Louis Children’s Hospital. Nurses in brightly colored scrubs pass frequently through the hall, sliding into one room, then another. This is the place 4-year-old Tim Grant called home for about four months, including Christmas, last year.

Tim is living with stage 4 neuroblastoma, a form of cancer that affects nerve cells. The disease is most often found in the adrenal glands, above the kidneys or behind the eye.

His parents, David and Tammy Grant, did not learn about his disease until it had reached its final stage.

“We took him to the doctor last December because we noticed a limp and a black eye,” Tammy said.

Doctors ran tests and started Tim on chemotherapy the next afternoon.

Since then, Tim has spent most of his time in the hospital. In the past year, he has gone through radiation treatments, chemotherapy and a stem cell transplant.

A family member told Tammy about the Dream Factory, a nonprofit group that fulfills dreams for children who are critically or chronically ill. Tim met the requirements and the Dream Factory decided to grant Tim’s dream of going to Disney World to see his favorite characters.

But while in Florida last year, he became ill and had to spend most of the trip in a hospital. The Dream Factory is sending Tim and his family back to Disney World this Christmas.

Tim is on the way to recovery but will not be considered in remission until his next set of scans comes back clear.

GROUP: The Dream Factory of Central Missouri

SUMMARY: The Dream Factory is a nonprofit group that fulfills dreams for children, between the ages of 3 and 18, who are critically or chronically ill. The Dream Factory also grants dreams to children who have experienced serious accidents. Anyone can refer children for dreams to be granted.

CONTACT: Mike Whitworth, area coordinator, at 443-7500 or 33 E Broadway, Suite 155 Columbia, 65203

WISH: Tim’s dream of going to Disney World with his family is going to be granted over the Christmas season, but donations to the Dream Factory ensure that other children will get their wishes fulfilled.

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