Violet Spataro, 4 years old
Brave Violet has gone through CT scans, MRIs, surgeries, countless blood draws, multiple injections, 12 rounds of chemotherapy, 20 Exams Under Anesthesia (EUA), hospital stays for systemic infections and more. All of this began for her at just 7 months old when she was diagnosed with Retinoblastoma.
After genetic testing, it was found that Violet has the RB1 gene mutation. This means that in addition to being susceptible to cancerous tumors occurring in her eyes, she has a higher probability of cancer occurring in other parts of the body throughout her life because she lacks an important tumor suppressing protein. Specifically, cancer of the pineal gland in the brain (pinealoma), a type of bone cancer known as osteosarcoma, cancers of soft tissues such as muscle, and an aggressive form of skin cancer called melanoma.
Violet was also found to have a small deletion in chromosome 13. This condition is very rare. It is known to cause many issues including growth and developmental delays, autism, low muscle tone, kidney failure, seizures, blood clotting, sensory processing disorder and more.
As Retinoblastoma can re-occur through age 6, Violet continues to be closely monitored by her amazing and compassionate team of specialists at Seattle Children's Hospital. Her monitoring plan includes MRIs, labs, EUAs (exams under anesthesia), oncology clinic, audiology and vision checks.
Through all of her treatments and beyond, Violet shines with incredible courage and charisma. Her joyful disposition and loving heart have carried her through a long and difficult childhood cancer battle with an amazing grace. Violet reminds us through her healing to always count our blessings. She shows us the meaning of a true warrior and what being grateful with your whole heart is really about.
Seattle University's Dance Marathon has the special privilege of working with Miracle Kids from Seattle Children's Hospital, who have benefited from the Uncompensated Care Fund that our philanthropy supports. Our Miracle Kids and their families attend SUDM events throughout the year, including The Dance Marathon.