We are the Villars'. We are a family of four ... although we dearly miss the presence of our son, Wayland. On August 9, 2013, we lost him to a disease callled DIPG, 15 months after diagnosis. DIPG is a tumor found on the brainstem, so it is an extremely difficult tumor to treat. Therefore, it offers only a 1% survival rate and a median life expectancy of 12 months after diagnosis. We live just north of Indianapolis and so we began Wayland's treatment journey at Riley Children's Hospital in April, 2012, just after his diagnosis. Wayland received the standard treatment for this disease, 6½ weeks of radiation therapy. Participating in a clinical trial was Wayland's
only other choice for treatment after radiation. We studied our options and chose to go to Lucile Packard Children's Hospital in Palo Alto, CA for a vaccine therapy. Wayland recieved a treatment every 28 days. That meant a monthly week-long trip to CA. He recieved 12 treatments before the tumor started to grow again. We tried one more treatment at Cincinnati Children's, but sadly, Wayland only went on to live 4 more months. He slowly lost all of his body functions, to a point where all he could do was sit in our arms the last weeks of his life. He left us broken, but not defeated because he taught us to overcome our fears and anxieties ... We are the Villars' and we will fight!
"There are only two ways to live your life.
One is as though nothing is a miracle.
The other is as though everything is a miracle."