PORTLAND, Ore. -- A mother and her young daughter were both diagnosed with cancer within less than two weeks of each other.
Summar Ruelle was diagnosed with stage IV breast cancer in the fall of 2012. Her daughter, Sapphire, was diagnosed with leukemia about eleven days later.
“I wanted to forget about myself and my own diagnosis and put all my treatments on hold,” Summar said.
The same week Sapphire went into treatment at one hospital, her 36-year-old mother started her own treatment at another.
“I have no idea how they have dealt with all this,” Dr. Jason Glover with Randall Children’s Hospital said. “They’ve had tremendous grace under a lot of pressure.”
Glover says Sapphire’s prognosis is “excellent.”
“Most of kids with leukemia have better than a 90 percent chance of being cured,” Glover said.
The outlook is not as promising for Summar, but doctors are scanning her for any changes every three months.
Summar’s husband, Pascal, quit his job to become a full-time caregiver.
“There (have) been days when I just wish I could take both their sicknesses and put them in me to deal with them myself. That would be easier,” Pascal said.
Friends and supporters have held fundraisers to help the family deal with medical expenses and to help care for the couple’s 6-year-old son, Jayden. Last week, the Make-A-Wish Foundation gave the family a much-needed break with a trip to Disney World.
A website has been established for those who wish to support the family: TheRuelleFamily.com