Meet Grace Voisey of Happy Valley-Goose Bay, NL
Because she can’t fight cancer alone
15 year-old Grace Voisey of Happy Valley-Goose Bay is a typical teenager. She loves school, competing in dance and being with her friends. But in the spring of 2020, things changed and Grace just wasn’t feeling herself. In June, she noticed swelling in her neck which was followed by a high fever. Grace was rushed to the hospital emergency in Goose Bay.
Following the results of bloodwork, doctors consulted with other doctors in St. John’s and confirmed that further testing would be required immediately in St. John’s, 1600km from home. At that moment, everything changed. Grace’s mom, DeeDee, had 30 minutes to go home, pack some belongings and be airlifted to St. John’s with her daughter. Once in St. John’s doctors confirmed Grace has Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) which is a type of cancer in which the bone marrow makes abnormal myeloblasts (a type of white blood cell), red blood cells, or platelets. With Grace’s dad, Jason, and sister Juliette still in Goose Bay, this was devastating news for the family, as it also meant a treatment schedule in St. John’s for at least the next 9 months. With only a gym bag of personal items, the family separated by distance and a challenging road ahead in another city far from home, this was something no family could prepare for. They worried about numerous things, even the simple things, like where they would stay. They knew Grace could not fight this alone.
Shortly after Grace’s diagnosis the family was introduced to the programs and services of Ronald McDonald House, a place where Grace’s parents Jason and Dee Dee and her older siblings Juliette and Ryan could stay and support Grace during this long difficult hospital journey, far from home.
“We heard about Ronald McDonald House, but didn’t completely understand how important it is to families. Now that we are here, we can’t imagine what this would be like without it. The people are so friendly, supportive, and it is clean, very, very clean. We are a very close family and for Grace, this has been extra difficult being separated from us. But, now, she is coping much better while hospitalized knowing we are just steps away from her bedside at Ronald McDonald House.” DeeDee Voisey, Grace’s mom
For Jason and DeeDee, staying at Ronald McDonald House has meant so much because the love and support they can continue to provide Grace has given her the comfort she needs during hospitalization and separation from her family.
“Being able to continue to make Grace’s favorite breakfast items, whether it be her favorite maple sausages, cinnamon buns or even making her favorite cheesecake just like I always did when we were at home, has meant the world to Grace and to me. Thanks to Ronald McDonald House, I can still be the same Dad to Grace while she is in hospital as I am to her when we were home and everything was ok .” Jason Voisey, Grace’s dad
While Grace’s journey is far from over, with chemotherapy treatments expected to continue into the spring of 2021, the Voisey Family has found strength at Ronald McDonald House. Please donate today.
Please consider supporting Ronald McDonald House to help keep families close to each other and the medical care and resources they need, when they need it the most. www.RMHCNL.com/donate