Friday, June 11, 2010


Graduation Day!
Tyler graduated from High School! On time, with his classmates. As they said during the graduation speech, Tyler's FIGHT TO WIN spirit was the defining message of the class of 2010.

Doctors said this day would not happen. They said the time he lost from school, and the volume of chemo pumped into his body, would make it impossible for him to graduate on time. They actually said it would take a year or two before he would be able to attend classes full time.
But as with everything else involving cancer, Tyler proved them all wrong. He beat cancer, returned to school, returned to sports, caught up with his class, and still nailed the grades and ACT scores to get accepted into The Ohio State University.

His class asked me to speak at the high school Baccalaureate ceremony. I meant every word when I said, "It is an amazing thing to realized your greatest hero and inspiration in life is your own son." This is Tyler's day, and he has earned it.
And as inspirational as Tyler's victory has been, it must be remembered that it was not done alone.

  • When Tyler came home between chemo treatments, his classmates surrounded our home, screaming "FIGHT TO WIN!"
  • During the Sweetheart Dance, the school unanimously decided to eliminate corsages. Instead they gave the money to Tyler's fund, and worn Tyler's FIGHT TO WIN wristbands. The students told me, "Flowers die, and we decided to spend our money on it is going to Tyler".
  • The high school hockey team dedicated a championship game to Tyler, and presented Tyler with the winning puck. as a fund raiser they raffled off a jersey signed by the Blue Jackets. The winner of the raffle handed back the jersey, saying "Give it to Tyler".
  • Hundreds came out to support Tyler at Laps for Love. Jim Tressel sent an autographed football signed by the team to be auctioned. the winner of the football also handed it back to me, saying, "Give it to Tyler".
  • Kids asked for gifts to Tyler in lieu of birthday presents. There were basketball, softball, baseball, and dodge ball tournaments.
  • And I will never forget the day a caravan of kids with shaved heads came to the hospital to shave Tyler's head. Forever embedded in my heart is the call I received, "We are here because this is our responsibility. We will never allow cancer to have the privilege of taking Tyler's hair. He is our friend, and cancer gets nothing from our friend."
So as we mention our friends still in the battle, please remember that this battle can not be won alone. Please remember our friends. The victory is not yet won.

Christina O'Brian

Matthew Barr

Sam Bish

Alexis Agin

Faith Pruden


Lynne Mandel said...

How wonderful! I've missed your posts and hoped it was for wonderful reasons like this (graduation!)that you hadn't been posting. Praise God for Tyler's good healthy, and prayers continue for those beautiful kids! Hope your training is going well too!

Lynne in Pgh (Teri Hinckley's sister)

deyerles said...

Tyler you are one handsome devil! Congratulations we are so very proud of you!

Anonymous said...

Way to go Tyler!

Anonymous said...

Hey Tyler - congratulations on your graduation and acceptance into OSU. Best wishes for a happy, healthy, and prosperous future.

Anonymous said...

It is great day and Bright future to look forward for Tyler!
I am thanking GOD everyday that we can see our children graduating and moving on with Life.
Very happy for you and family

Anonymous said...


So wonderful to see you smiling, wearing your graduation gown. Congratulations on all of your hard work, in and out of the classroom.

For you Kyle, good going as well. Some classrooms are in schools and some are in hospitals. Celebrate your own accomplishments.

Happy Father's Day!