Posted by Pat Garcia-Gonzalez on October 19, 2010
For those of us who have lost loved ones to cancer, birthday anniversaries are always a difficult time. Having lost Max at the sweet age of 17, one feels such sadness for what could have been. What would he have become? What difference would he have made in the world? Yet, for Max, what could have been is not, but instead, something beautiful has evolved from the darkness: a worldwide movement of hope and courage. Max has become a symbol of hope for many, and today he lives in the hearts of people all around the world.
In honor of his birthday, I respectfully ask you to do two things: First, write a message of encouragement to people fighting cancer while adding your name to the World Cancer Declaration; and second, take one minute and watch a very short video of a boy living with cancer whose heartfelt message symbolizes the power of giving hope.
Otamurod is 12 and lives in Uzbekistan and like Max, was diagnosed with CML at a young age. The Max Foundation was blessed to be able to facilitate his access to treatment. Otamurod wrote a song for Max and in the song he says, “I saw a dream, I met Max in my dream. I was lying in a cold, dark, gorge all alone. Max reached out his hand to me. He rescued me. Together we flew to the sky; we landed to the vast, green meadow. He smiled at me under the shining sun… ” Watch his video. While you may not understand his words, you will certainly feel his love. Otamurod’s song and his feelings are the best birthday present anyone could ever have.
This October 19th, Max would have turned 37 years old. Happy birthday, Max; you are forever in our hearts.