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'I just beat it:' 10-year-old celebrates beating cancer at Beverly Knight Olson Children's Hospital

Bryan Thompson got to ring the bell signifying the end of treatment, and he also received a special message from UGA coach Kirby Smart

MACON, Ga. — Over the course of a year, the Beverly Knight Olson Children’s Hospital will see 50 families with children fighting cancer.

Many are victorious, and when it’s all said and done, the children don’t just walk out the door.

“It's something you look forward to from the day of diagnosis with these kids,” said Pediatric Oncology RN Megan Ghann.

Last year, 10-year-old Bryan Thompson’s mother took him to the emergency room after a football injury and eventually his family learned he had cancer.

“I mean, you just wouldn’t expect news like that,” said his mother, Vanessa Dennard.

A 10-year-old shouldn’t know about ports and where they’re placed on the body, but he’s had a lot of experience.

“24 chemo and 23 radiations,” said Bryan.

All of that is over now, and now is a time for pictures and celebration.

“I just beat it,” said Bryan with a smile.

And when you beat cancer, all kinds of things happen. Bryan got a message from someone well known in the Dawg Nation – the Big Dawg himself, Kirby Smart.

“I heard the good news and I’m excited for you,” said Smart via a video message.

It’s also a tradition at the children’s hospital to ring a bell when the last treatment is over.

“I’m going to ring that bell like I’ve never rung it before,” exclaimed Bryan.

“He told me this morning, he said, ‘Mama when I ring that bell, I'm gonna ring it so loud I'm just gonna ring it, ring it, ring it,’ and that's exactly what he did,” said Dennard.

“He fought a really hard battle and he won and we're just blessed that we got to celebrate with him to see him ring a bell to say, ‘I finished my treatment, I did well, I fought my fight and now I'm done,’” said Ghann.

Bryan is excited for Christmas this year, and for a good reason. Earlier this week, he had the chance to light the Beverly Knight Olson Christmas tree this year.

Along with lighting the tree, he joined Chief Meterologist Ben Jones to help with the weather and talk about the holiday they both enjoy – Christmas.


100% of funds donated through Cares for Kids will go directly towards the hospital's programs, services, and equipment. There's a few ways to donate.


Call (478)-633-6000 or text 4KIDS to 51555.


You can make a donation of $15, $25, $100, $180, or write in a custom amount online at https://www.navicenthealth.org/radiothon



Cares for Kids | Here's how you can help kids at the Beverly Knight Olson Children's Hospital

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