El Monte High Students Support Fight Against Pediatric Cancer
By Anne Donofrio-Holter
El Monte, CA –El Monte High School students and staff dedicated the month of September to pediatric cancer awareness in honor of National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. The highlight of the month’s activities was the naming of five-year old cancer patient Doryan Torres Carrillo a honorary captain and member of the school’s varsity football team during the September 28 game, thus fulfilling one of the items on the boy’s wish list.
Game night events included a pre-game car and motorcycle show and a flash mob of more than 100 people that took to the field at halftime singing and dancing to inspirational songs. The evening’s most memorable moment, however, came when Doryan walked onto the field accompanied by the team captains and his brother Dylan, who plays on the team.
“The game was not only dedicated to Doryan, but to every child battling cancer,” said El Monte High School football coach Joel Sanchez. “The entire experience over the course of the month has been positive for our students who have become close to Doryan.”
According to principal Keith Richardson, Doryan’s family, along with Sanchez, worked together to make the event happen.
“Last year the entire junior varsity football team wore yellow support tape in support of Doryan and the team recently celebrated Doryan’s birthday by singing Happy Birthday to him,” said Richardson.
To bring attention to pediatric cancer, all school service clubs participated in fundraising activities for the cause, students wore yellow wrist bands and cancer awareness buttons during the month as a show of support and the Red Cross held a blood drive on campus.
According to the American Childhood Cancer Organization, each year in the United States approximately 13,000 children from birth through 19 years of age are diagnosed with cancer.