Mom, dad, and son pose for a picture in the hospital

Comforts of Home: Jon’s Story

Even during a global pandemic, pediatric illness doesn’t stop. Still, Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Central and Northern Arizona continues to be a home base families can lean on as they focus on fighting life’s toughest battles.

The availability of the House became especially important for 13-year-old Jon and his family from Anthem, Arizona. Diagnosed with leukemia for the 3rd time, Jon received a bone marrow transplant at Phoenix Children’s Hospital in February 2020. After being discharged in March, he was able to remain close to the hospital during his recovery, and most importantly, with his family by his side.

“We live too far away up north near New River, Arizona to get to the hospital fast enough in case of complication or infection,” Jon’s mom Penny said. “So it is a great stress reliever for us as parents to be able to have some privacy and comforts similar to home while still doing medical treatments for our child.”

During their 31-night stay at Ronald McDonald House®, the family has also made connections to other families that have helped them through this journey. “My neighbor has a 3-month-old son who had a bone marrow [transplant] about a week before my son,” Penny shared. “Ironically, my husband and her husband actually met at the hospital before coming here, so it was a surprise that we ended up as neighbors. We spend free time together – eating dinner and sharing our experience.”

As the COVID-19 outbreak created even more stress for families caring for their sick children, the House continued to provide for Jon’s family. “Staff, sponsors, and volunteers addressed our concerns, provided warm meals to all the families, and, in turn, treated us like family,” Penny said.

Now back at home in Anthem, Jon’s family is grateful that they had a place to call home along their stressful path. Especially during this critical time, your donation to RMHC of Central and Northern Arizona give families to comfort and hope of home when they need it most.