An Austin boy spent most of his young life fighting brain cancer. Now he's using the smile of a superhero and the power of a villain to help other kids cope.
A lot of things make Harley Fetterman different from other kids.
"I'm just, um, weired, accidental," Harley said.
Harley is 11 and 3/4's years old. He's fired up about life and likes to pick on his dad.
Diagnosed at 5 years old, Harley's spent most of his life fighting brain cancer. He's been through two rounds of chemotherapy and has the scars to prove it.
"That's where they put the portocath in and took it out. They put the chemo in there," Harley said.
That didn't work, so he needed surgery to remove the tumor.
"And then they noticed it was growing again," Harley said.
So he had another round of brain surgery and has the scars to prove it -- not that he minds.
"But hey, I"m cool with that," Harley said. "Chicks dig scars and I have plenty to show for it."
Now he's blind in one eye and nearly blind in the other, but he has a good grasp on his senses and has mastered braille.
He's at Dell Children's Medical Center in the Blood and Cancer Center -- feeling his way through the creation of a villain cape.
"Villains are always cool, y'know," he said.
It's part of Superhero Kids Day, a new volunteer program that recognizes the strength and determination of young survivors and patients fighting pain, exhaustion and fear. Harley's cancer's been in remission since October, and he's fearless.
When he comes to the Blood and Cancer Center, he's a shoulder to lean on, someone who understands.
Parker Yax is almost seven years old. After extreme headaches and vomiting, doctors diagnosed brain cancer two years ag.
Now he's in chemotherapy and gets blood transfusions every six weeks.
Fighting through it all, friends and family gave him a new name -- Super Parker.
Very few kids have to go through this, so it's nice when they meet someone who gets it, someone who spreads brightness.
"I think I'm normally that way," Harley said.
That's essential to fighting a dark disease.
"Y'know, hold on and it'll be alright," Harley said.
Exactly what young patients need to hear and believe from someone who's made it.
WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
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