Childhood Cancer License Plate Bill

GRAND JUNCTION - If a new measure being considered by Colorado law makers is approved, showing your support for childhood cancer could be as easy as purchasing a license plate.

As a parent, the last thing that crosses your mind is 'my child has cancer."

It's something that no parent ever wants to go through.

"I never thought anything about childhood cancer until Delaney was diagnosed," said Wendy Reece, Delaney's mother.

In 2010, Wendy Reece's daughter Delaney Clements was diagnosed with stage four neuroblastoma cancer at just seven years old.

After six years of fighting and several clinical trials later, she knew her daughters time would soon be limited.

"At the end right when she was put into hospice care, it had spread to her brain and she said, 'I'm done. I just want to be happy and live out my days," said Reece.

Yet she believes Delaney's days came to an end too soon and that with more research, her daughter along with others affected by childhood cancer may still be alive.

"They get 4% of funding from the National Institute of Health and that's for all childhood cancers not just specific cancers," said Reece.

"I don't think people realize how many kids do have cancer or are afflicted with serious illnesses," said Keenan Clements, Delaney's brother.

As a result, advocates across Colorado are pushing for a new way to raise awareness.

"This is a house bill that's been introduced this year in the legislator, which would create a specialized license plate for childhood cancer," said Jim Hamlin with the St. Baldrick's Foundation.

"You're asking people to donate to a childhood cancer organization and then you're asking people to pay $50 to go to the state," said Reece.

As of now, Reece along with several others are gaining support for the bill - including from Mesa County Commissioner Rose Pugliese.

"As people may remember back in 2014, I shaved my head for the St.Baldrick's foundation and I continue to support the cause. This makes a lot of sense to me and it's something I want to support," said Pugliese.

If the bill passes, they hope it will not only bring awareness towards childhood cancer, but also a cure.

"I want there to be one day where a kid can just say, "Oh, I've got cancer." and people will just tell them "Oh, you'll be alright. Just take a week off from school and you'll be over it," said Clements.

Many people had concerns over State Representative Yullen Willett not supporting the bill. However, after consideration he's now in favor of it.

The bill is currently under consideration in the House Transportation & Energy committee.

A hearing on it is scheduled for March 21.

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