Family creates snowy scene to make memories with young leukemia patient
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DURHAM -- Snowflakes fell Saturday in Durham – but only in one neighborhood.
The Winslow family helped fulfill a dream for their 4-year-old son, Preston, who doctors say has about two months to live. He was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia two years ago.
"We got a pretty bad prognosis and the doctors told us we should start making memories," James Winslow, the boy's father, said.
When doctors diagnosed him with leukemia, they told his family there are no viable options for treatment. So his parents are trying to make memories that last.
“My husband and I just thought of things that he would want to do,” his mother, Celeste, said.
“Its easy to get down but it's a waste of time so you should just have fun,” James Winslow said.
For fun, the family arranged a winter wonderland. If it weren't for the tests and diagnosis, Preston's family says they would never know he's sick.
"He's acting so great, you know, and still full of energy. It's very hard for us to believe that there's nothing else they can do,” said Celeste Winslow.
Because of all of the doctor visits and hospital stays, the Winslows want to budget time to make sure Preston gets to do all the things other kids get to do.
Preston recently visited Walt Disney World, rode in a helicopter, drove the New Hope Train, and soon he'll meet football star Tim Tebow. His mother says these experiences and the smiles they bring help him through tough times.
"I cry before I go to bed because I don't want the next day to come because it's one day closer to us losing him,” she said.
While they don't look forward to the coming months, they're happy Preston has many opportunities to just be a kid.
“It gives us comfort knowing that he has been able to enjoy things we would normally never be able to provide him. Him being happy is what's getting us through each day,” said Celeste Winslow.
Through all this, the Winslows have a message for the community.
"That's our goal is to get people to sign up to be bone marrow donors. Hopefully they will find a cure for this someday. Unfortunately it wasn't for my child,” Celeste Winslow said.
Two local companies -- Southern Snow and Snow My Yard – donated the snow and their time.