Brain tumors No. 1 fatal cancer in children

April 27 was a one-year anniversary, but not one for celebrating. It was the first anniversary of the death of our beautiful 9-year-old daughter Kortney, who was taken away from us four short months after the diagnosis of a brain tumor.

Why write about something so private? Because beyond our grief and tears, there is a much larger message that pediatric brain tumors are the No. 1 cancer-related cause of death in children 20 and under. No one knows this fact!

Our family didn’t until we were thrown into the horrible world of pediatric cancer. May is brain tumor awareness month. We must bring this disease to the forefront to raise much needed funding for research to identify causes and pioneer new treatments and cures.

The National Cancer Institute cut funding by 25 percent in 2007. If the government can’t find it in the budget to help save our children … then we must! Private funding is essential to keep making progress.

That is why we turned our grief into action and started The Kortney Rose Foundation to raise money for pediatric brain tumor research and awareness. More than 3,500 children will be diagnosed each year with a primary brain or central nervous system tumor. There are over 120 different kinds of pediatric brain tumors. Five-year survival rates are only 66 percent. Annually about 350 children get a brainstem glioma, like Kortney had, and every one of them will die from it.

Please visit our Web site to find more information on Kortney’s story, pediatric brain tumors and how you can help us, help doctors, help kids:

Kristen Gillette


The Kortney Rose Foundation