Evan Meade was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) on January 27, 2010 just two weeks after his 16th birthday. With what he thought was the flu, Evan went to the doctor to determine why he got so sick in just a couple of days. Blood tests revealed that he needed to go to Riley Hospital immediately and be tested for leukemia.
Two days after Evan was diagnosed, his health spiraled downward quickly. Evan was moved into the Intensive Care Unit at Riley Hospital for Children fighting for his life while all organs began shutting down. His body enlarged from 220 pounds to 280 pounds and then eventually down to 140 pounds. He was placed on a ventilator, kidney dialysis, his lungs collapsed and filled with fluid, his liver was not functioning, his brain swelled and his body filled with infection eventually removing his spleen. All of this while his body was still trying to fight out the 97% Leukemia cells that had filled his body.
After the first round of chemotherapy it was determined Evan was in remission and the chemotherapy was working. Evan endured five rounds of chemotherapy staying in the hospital for up to 35 days each round of chemotherapy in all over 180 days in the hospital over a nine-month period. Evan still continues to have blood work and checkups every six months at Riley Hospital making sure the leukemia is still in remission.
In 2011, Evan started the Franklin Community High School Dance Marathon and continues to speak on behalf of Riley at various events. Evan was also honored to be a 2012 Riley Champion.