August 30, 2011
Megan Evans: A Pediatric Cancer Survivor on Her Toes
BY Gail Goodwin
In April 2000, 7-year-old Megan Evans moved from ballet lessons, gymnastics and Rollerblades into the more serious world of pediatric cancer.
Diagnosed with Ewing's sarcoma, she began treatment for her cancer and spent a semester in the MD Anderson Children's Cancer Hospital elementary school classroom. During that time, Megan was introduced to the Children's Art Project and has since been a CAP designer numerous times.
A fashionista at heart, Megan's hats became her major wardrobe accessory. To show support, her school held a monthly "hat day" until Megan was ready to take off her own head covering.
Even after completing treatment, Megan remained involved with the Children's Cancer Hospital. She never missed a summer at Camp Star Trails and Camp A.O.K., returning to Star Trails for several years as a counselor.
Still cheering her on
I met Megan for the first time at a CAP photo shoot for the 2001 holiday collection. This adorable little girl was a charmer I've remained close to ever since. I remember her first communion, when she was able to return to gymnastics, her cheerleader tryouts and even her senior prom. It's amazing to know that she has left us all behind in exchange for a dorm room this fall.
Headed by Joann Ater, M.D., professor in the Division of Pediatrics at the Children's Cancer Hospital, the Childhood Cancer Survivor Clinic has been tracking former patients for more than 30 years. In addition to Ater, Megan looks up to her oncologist, Cynthia Herzog, M.D., also a professor in the division.
Like many former patients, Megan has her goals set high. She's planning on a biomedical sciences major at Texas A&M to lead her to a position as a pediatric oncologist. At MD Anderson, we're all hoping we see her back in our halls some day.
Childhood cancer survivor clinic
You can read more about Megan and her experiences with the Childhood Cancer Survivor Clinic in an article included in the Children's Cancer Hospital Newsletter.
The Children's Cancer Hospital will celebrate Childhood Cancer Awareness Month in September with a special event for survivors at the Museum for Health and Medical Science in Houston. The Tree of Life, an art project led by artist-in-residence Ian Cion and created by Children's Cancer Hospital patients and their siblings, will make its debut at the event and then move to The Park at MD Anderson on Sept. 23.