INDIAN LAND, SC (WBTV) - Stared at the computer, not knowing how to begin this one. But, here goes…
Mackenzie Lynn Barron, 3, (from Omaha, NE but recently moved to Indian Land, SC) fell and hit her head so hard back in April, her parents had to take her to the emergency room. When they got there, doctors noticed something unusual on her CT scan. An MRI was eventually done.
Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma.
Known casually as DIPG.
Though, if you've ever known a child with DIPG, you know there is nothing casual about this very rare cancer.
DIPG is located on the brain stem.
There is no cure.
Radiation can help, but Mackenzie's father is candid in saying he knows it's only prolonging the inevitable.
"The doctor was visibly shaken while trying to give us this news," Thomas Barron said. "Our hearts are broken. We need prayers and love all around. Most of our family and friends are still in Omaha… we are so far away and feel so alone, it is unbearable."
Even more so, Thomas said, given that Mackenzie is actually a "Rainbow Baby," something her parents have never told anyone but said they're okay with sharing now.
("Rainbow Baby" means you get pregnant soon after losing an infant. Google says it's because a beautiful and bright rainbow follows a storm and gives hope of things getting better.)
"We miscarried in 2012," says Thomas. "We viewed Mackenzie as our miracle baby. A chance to do things differently than the first two and a real chance to cherish every moment of time with her and her siblings."
Thomas said she blows them away, all the time.
"She will come up and say, 'Daddy, you don't feel well? Are you sad? Let me go get my doctor kit and make you better!' Those words made me proud at Christmas last year, now they make me cry knowing what is lying ahead of her."
He said he calls her his little mouse. That her mother, Lynn, calls her the "sweetest, kindest, most giving child" and her "little princess."
"We must find a cure," says Thomas. "Even if Mackenzie isn't a recipient, maybe she can be the one who breaks the barrier for other kids."
Pediatric cancer is terrible. DIPG is horrific. And then to be new to an area after moving from your home… Thomas, Lynn, you guys tell us what you could possibly use at this time. We've got a large family of #MollysKids here who, I bet, would love to help you and your little mouse-princess in whatever way you think is best.
Let us know what you need, and please, keep us updated.
**Editor's note: This is about one of #MollysKids, children WBTV Anchor Molly Grantham follows closely on her Facebook page. It was first published there, which is why it's written in a personal way. For years Molly has followed hundreds of kids with uphill medical battles. Find this story and updates on all #MollysKids here.**