New York man walks to raise awareness for childhood cancer
LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – A man from New York is hitting the pavement to raise awareness for childhood cancer, but in the middle of his journey, he found himself in a battle of his own.
Jim Hickey has done ten walks across different states to raise money for children with cancer.
“You know adults, we’ve already lived a pretty good portion of our lives. Whereas say Paishence, she’s 5 years old and this is all she’s known,” Hickey said.
Hickey was walking across Nebraska for Paishence Hansen, a 5-year-old from Cozad, who’s currently battling pediatric brain cancer.
“Her eyes just kinda stole my heart and I also saw that they weren’t getting as much help as I thought they could use. So I decided I was going to walk across Nebraska to raise awareness for Paishence,” Hickey said.
Hickey was 360 miles into his walk when he was diagnosed with bladder cancer.
“He really wanted to finish, but it got mental for him at the end. I’m like Jim you need to take care of yourself. My daughter’s still with us but now you have your situation with cancer,” Tara Meyer, Paishence’s mother, said.
Despite his own diagnosis, Hickey still wants to hit the road once he’s feeling better and continue raising awareness for childhood cancer.
“I want to put an emphasis on childhood cancer because only 4% of the money allocated to cancer research in the country goes to childhood cancer,” Hickey said.
Paishence has been off chemo for a year and has been doing better.
This Saturday, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln invited Paishence and her family to the men’s basketball game.
“For my daughter to attend here is amazing, because we as a family don’t do these things. So it’s an honor for us just to attend a game,” Meyer said.
Once Jim starts to feel better, he will start the walk in the same spot where he left off.
“I’m hoping that there’s enough awareness raised that we can find a cure,” Hickey said.
If you are looking to help out Paishence and her family, you can head to her GoFundMe.