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The University of Iowa University of Iowa

The Will Olson Family

“Your child has cancer.” The four words a family NEVER expects to hear. While our entire world came to a screeching halt, I remember looking back at our sweet little two-year-old boy having no idea what our new journey was going to look like.

For the next nine months it was chemo, surgeries, emergencies, fevers, exhaustion, fear and so many unknowns. At the same time there was strength, bravery, love, hope, fight and FTK. Three letters that when put together become the most powerful force that would change our lives.

I didn’t understand Dance Marathon, and at the time wasn’t interested. It would make our painful journey all the more real if I embraced the dancers and let them into our life. Over time there was a shift. We were in this for the long haul. All I knew was that my little boy was terrified.

You just kept showing up, and we thought there must be something more. Dancers would pour beads back and forth from cup to cup just to make Will smile. When all Will wanted was to be carried and to walk the halls, the dancers would just walk the halls with me and help push the IV pole. When we needed a break from hospital food, there were gift cards to restaurants.

Then one day it all made sense. This is about becoming a part of a family. At the end of the day, it was all of you that inspired us. You have made an impact that words just cannot begin to express. Each and every single one of you has left an impression on our hearts that we will carry with us forever.

So, thank you. Thank you for loving without boundaries. Thank you for making a difference, and reminding so many that there is still good in this world. Forever grateful, and always FTK!

-Jenny Olson, Will's mom