Jake Newcomer's Bio
Jake (Jacob) Newcomer is a kind-hearted 11-year-old blue-eyed boy, radiating his optimistic old-soul perspectives to all that he crosses paths with. Jake has an inquisitive quest for knowledge, the ability to creatively think outside the box, as well as an appreciation for certain classics (particularly video gaming!). His strong beliefs and admirable love for life has him recognizing and cherishing the value of family, friends, and other gifts of God – such as nature and the diverse life forms within. Jake’s passion for animals often has him teaching us about unique species found outside the typical barnyard scope!
Jake began his amazing journey with us on March 13, 2007. He was born and raised in Mount Airy, Maryland. He has an older brother, Jaden, and a half-brother, Braxton. As an avid animal lover, he has numerous pets – including: 3 dogs, 2 cats, 1 hedgehog, 1 turtle, 3 hermit crabs, fish, as well as several chickens and ducks.
Jake is an honor roll student, a class leader amongst his peers, student government Treasurer, an artist, and musician. He is often recognized for his willingness to help fellow students and teachers. Most recently, Jake became the very first recipient of the Challenge Coin – a new initiative established by the superintendent of Worcester County Public Schools, honoring Jake for his positive and inspiring impact on the community.
On October 25, 2018, Jake fell and bumped his jaw on the ground. His jaw swelled up and he was taken to the dentist to have it looked at. The dentist referred us to a specialist at Children’s Hospital who informed us there was another underlying issue at hand. There was a mass growing inside his jaw bone and destroying his jaw bone. After dealing with insurance difficulties, we found care at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore where it was biopsied and confirmed to be Ewing’s Sarcoma. Ewing’s Sarcoma is a rare and dangerous cancer that can easily spread throughout the body.
At this point, the procedural pace and time spent at the hospital quickly increased – attempting to better define the scope and staging of the rare, yet aggressive, malignant sarcoma. The prognosis of Ewing’s Sarcoma is much more favorable when caught early enough while it is still localized. Unfortunately, the aggressive nature of this sarcoma includes common tendencies to metastasize to the bone marrow and lungs relatively quickly, consequently having a considerable negative impact in respect to the prognosis.
It became apparent that Jake, along with our family, had arguably hit the most devastating, life changing and unlucky lottery possible. According to the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), “about 225 children and teenagers in the United States are diagnosed annually with an Ewing tumor, most of which will be Ewing sarcoma. Ewing tumors make up about 1% of all childhood cancers.” Due to this, minimal research and truly no proven treatment tailored to children’s Ewing’s Sarcoma are currently available.
The first weekend of December 2018, Jake was admitted to John Hopkins to begin treatment – consisting of: approximately 4 months of chemo, followed by 2 months of radiation, then another 4 months chemo. Sadly, the rocky journey doesn’t end there. The tumor has caused significant destruction to the jawbone and will require extensive facial reconstructive surgery – with months of therapy to reconstruct and rehabilitate Jake and his jaw. This will be in addition to several years of routine checkups that will hopefully confirm and ensure continued treatment success.
Currently, Jake is in the hospital almost daily fighting off fevers and infections. We still have a very long journey ahead of us. Any form of help to alleviate medical bills, or to provide supplemental support to help the parents with being absent from work, travel expenses, and any additional home care would be eternally appreciated.