Ally’s all ‘fore’ St. Jude

St. Jude patient Ally has always been an active girl — she’s into swimming, tennis, soccer and golf. But when cancer tried to keep her from playing, St. Jude stepped in to help. Now Ally’s back to all her activities, and will play in this week’s Pro-Am at the FedEx St. Jude Classic.

Ally has always been an active girl — she’s into swimming, tennis, soccer and golf. Her parents, Emerald and Ken, describe her as a tomboy. “She’s bright and fun,” said Emerald.

But in October 2013, Ally slowed down. A lot. She was dizzy and often felt exhausted. Tests soon showed Ally suffered from a rare brain tumor called medulloblastoma. She underwent brain surgery to remove the tumor and then proton therapy at a hospital near her home.

When Ally’s family learned she’d need continuing treatment, they turned to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. St. Jude is working to drive the overall survival rate for childhood cancer to 90%, and we won’t stop until no child dies from cancer.

At St. Jude, Ally underwent seven rounds of chemotherapy. “When we first arrived, I wasn’t expecting it to be such a happy place,” Emerald said. “It’s a place of miracles. It’s all about the kids.” While Ally was undergoing treatment, she participated in the Little Loopers Honorary Caddie program during the FedEx St. Jude Classic.

Now, Ally is finished with treatment and visits St. Jude for biannual checkups. She will start high school in the fall, and has started to play golf competitively.

And this summer, Ally will be back at the FedEx St. Jude Classic, playing in the June 7 Pro-Am. Ken will caddy for her. “Golf is Ally and Ken’s thing,” Emerald said. “They’ve played together since she was 3 years old.”

Ally’s family is dedicated to helping raise awareness and funds for the hospital they credit with saving Ally’s life. “They were there for us during the most trying time in our family,” said Emerald. “And they continue to be there for us. We couldn’t be more thankful for St. Jude.”

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