Childhood cancer advocates go to Capitol Hill - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Childhood cancer advocates go to Capitol Hill to fight for improved care

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WASHINGTON -

Seven-year-old Brooke Mulford is from Salisbury, Md. Her favorite part of a few days in D.C. is "going to the doll shop." With her new American Girl Doll at her side, Brooke and her mother, Amy, are on Capitol Hill talking about their fight against cancer.

"Your job is to protect your children and that's something you just can't protect them from," says Amy.

Jennifer Cullen Meyer came from Gaithersburg, Md. Her daughter, Alexandra, was diagnosed at age three. Alexandra died just eight weeks ago.

"I feel like if I were to just sit by and be sad, that it wouldn't honor her," says Cullen Meyer.

So this mom, who is also a cancer epidemiologist, met with her congressman, Chris Van Hollen. They are pushing for bills that would make treatments less toxic and more tailored.

"This is a very important piece of legislation that will help young children with rare diseases be treated appropriately, have their treatment tailored to the specific characteristics of their cancer, which, right now, we don't do very well," says Cullen Meyer.

Several hundred people from all over the country came here to Capitol Hill Tuesday. They are mothers, fathers, children. They are part of the Alliance for Childhood Cancer. Their hope is to put a face on this disease.

"Truly, this is something that affects people in their districts," says Dean Ebert. "This is something that matters to us. They see it in a real way. They see the lives that are touched by cancer - particularly pediatric cancer."

Ebert lives in Arnold, Md. His son, Ashton, is in remission. He is pushing for the Cancer Survivorship Act. It is designed to help kids long term.


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