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A Stand for Hope: Inspirational Stories from Childhood Cancer Heroes

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By: Trish Adkins

Each year, CBS Philadelphia hosts the 14-hour Alex Scott: A Stand for Hope Telethon to benefit Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation. And each year, the station works tirelessly to find and share stories from childhood cancer families, researchers, favorite CBS personalities and an airing of the Emmy award-winning documentary Alex Scott: A Stand for Hope which tells the heartwarming story of ALSF Founder Alex Scott. 

Perry Casciato, the CBS Philadelphia Executive Producer for the telethon shared with us why the telethon is one of his favorite days of the year. A few years ago, Perry and the team decided to designate the final hour of the telethon as a special hero hour, when all the childhood cancer hero families would be in the studio. “There are so many families that participate in that hour that the phone area is often overpacked with people – extra chairs, kids on laps, people standing in the aisles. To some, it may look a little like chaos. To me, it is a beautiful culmination of the day’s activities and a reflection of how many families are in this fight and need our support,” said Perry. 

Throughout the week leading up to the telethon and during the telethon on June 20, CBS Philadelphia shares the stories of childhood cancer families and researchers. Here is a sneak peek at some of the stories you can hear this year on the Alex Scott: A Stand for Hope Telethon:

1.    Owen
Three-year-old Owen is facing brain cancer. Frontline treatment failed, but a clinical trial in Augusta, Georgia funded by Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation is giving Owen’s family hope. 

2.    Arden
Like ALSF founder Alex Scott, Arden had neuroblastoma. At diagnosis, doctors recommended that Arden be treated on a trial led by Dr. Yael Mossé at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Arden’s family took the risk — and today Arden is a thriving 5-year-old, who is cancer-free. 

3.    Lily
Diagnosed at 14 months old with a brain tumor called ependymoma, Lily wasn’t ever supposed to walk. But Lily had other plans — big plans. Lily walked and today, she is an 18-year-old on her way to her freshman year at Dominican University of New York, as a Division II rower. Together with her family, Lily has raised over $160,000 for ALSF and once broke the world record for the largest cup of lemonade. 

4.    Kabir
Eleven-year-old Kabir is dealing with the side effects of childhood cancer treatment for leukemia. Diagnosed at just 4 years old with a high-risk form of leukemia, Kabir had high-dose chemotherapy for two years. Kabir relapsed and this time tried CAR-T immunotherapy, only to relapse again 6 months later. Treatment led to several long-term side effects, but Kabir’s zest for life keeps him moving forward even on the hardest days. His family continues to fight for safer treatments. Kabir fundraises for ALSF and his school hosted a lemonade stand this year, with Kabir as the guest speaker.  

5.    Greta
Greta was a baby when relapsed leukemia led her parents to choose between hospice care and an at the time experimental treatment called CAR-T immunotherapy. Her parents chose the CAR-T immunotherapy and today, Greta is a happy and healthy 5th grader. The trial she was on was funded in part by Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation. 

Donate Today

Each year, CBS Philadelphia holds the Alex Scott: A Stand for Hope to benefit ALSF. Tune in on June 20 to watch these stories and several more. ALSF Staff and Volunteers will be available to take your call all day from 6 am until 8 pm ET by calling 866-333-1213. You can also text “CBSALEX” to 44321 to donate. You can stream it on