A week of holidays has come to the town of West Jordan, Utah, as the entire community rallies around one of its own.
Four-year-old Ethan van Leuven has fought valiantly against leukemia, but the family recently received news that the disease is now untreatable, and as a result, he has anywhere from days to a few weeks to live.
Not content to let little Ethan go without showing him one last act of love, the entire town has drawn together to celebrate a full week of holidays. Halloween came first, and Christmas will be soon thereafter, according to a report from KFOR.
Ethan was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at just 22-months-old. He has fought the disease almost as long as he’s been alive. His father, Merrill van Leuven, broke the news to the people of West Jordan earlier this week. They wanted Ethan’s last days to be a time of joy for him, and their friends and neighbors were more than ready to oblige.
Ethan, fittingly enough, decided to celebrate his Halloween as Superman. It takes a real superhero to go through what this little guy has gone through, and along with the help of his five siblings, he took to the streets of his town for some tricks and treats, as evidenced in the video below.
“It helps to see that there’s still good people in the world,” said Ethan’s mother.
His father agreed and shared one last message that he wanted his son to know.
“I… want him to know how proud I am of him for fighting through this and in the midst of his challenge being such an example of faith and strength.”
“I can’t even imagine being in that situation. We’re so excited to do whatever we can to help out their family,” said a neighbor unnamed in the report.
Unfortunately, Ethan’s story is not as uncommon as you would think, and organizations like Make-A-Wish do their part in trying to fulfill the final wishes of children with terminal illnesses and the families they leave behind.
However, it’s impossible to meet the needs of every child in this type of predicament, so it’s such a moving thing when a town embraces the challenge and goes to the lengths of West Jordan for one little boy.
As heartbreaking as this story is, it’s also encouraging to see there are good people left in the world, and that little boys like Ethan, even though gone too soon, get to leave their mark on the rest of us.
God bless, little superhero.