Diagnosed with a rare form of cancer last fall, the young boy has had multiple rounds of chemotherapy and stem cell transplants in the past year.
John and Danielle Puig's 6-year-old son Zeke has been through a lot in the past year. Diagnosed with a rare form of cancer last fall, the young boy has had multiple rounds of chemotherapy and stem cell transplants which have taken a heavy toll on his body. However, being the brave young lad that he is, Zeke pushed through it all with a huge grin on his face and an infectiously happy spirit that could light up any room. The little one bravely fought the disease even as he was forced to go days and weeks on end without meeting his most favorite people on the planet: his brothers and sister.
According to The Charlotte Gazette, the Puig family found out about Zeke's condition in October last year when his mother took him to see his pediatrician. The youngster had been experiencing a slew of worsening symptoms and Danielle's maternal instincts told her that something was very wrong. "After he had his blood tested and time was getting longer and longer before anyone returned, I knew it wasn't good," she said. "Our sweet and amazing doctor returned and immediately I knew I was going to hear the words I'd been thinking—leukemia."
Danielle explained that they then went straight to the University of Virginia Hospital where the spent the next three days believing that their child had leukemia. However, a bone marrow biopsy revealed that Zeke had Severe Aplastic Anemia (SAA) which is a rare bone marrow failure disorder. A few months later in January — after Zeke began experiencing a few not-so-typical symptoms—a second condition was added to the youngster's medical chart when he was diagnosed with Systemic Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (SJIA). But a second bone marrow biopsy at The Children's Hospital of Pennsylvania in February changed everything.
On February 21, doctors informed the Puigs that their son had Acute Myeloid Leukemia with monosomy 7—a type of cancer that affects the blood and bone marrow. Not long after, in March, Zeke was admitted to the hospital to begin chemotherapy. "It's devastating to watch your child go through a journey like this, so we are deeply wounded for him," said Danielle. "But we also felt overwhelmed with strength, not of our own, and peace too. God has been leading us every step of the way." Zeke receives a constant shower of love, support, and prayers through the Facebook page Pray for Zeke- fighting Acute Myeloid Leukemia where his parents post regular updates of his cancer journey.
They recently shared an incredibly emotional video of Zeke reuniting with his siblings after more than two months of not seeing them and the video has practically got the entire internet tearing up. The heartwarming video features the other three Puig children sitting on a bed in anticipation as their mother tells them to close their eyes for a special surprise. While the children believe that they're about to get new stuffed toys, unbeknownst to them, Zeke stands out in the hallway ready to surprise his two brothers and sister after 75 straight days in the hospital.
The moment the siblings lay eyes on their brother is truly one of the most heartwarming things to occur this year as it incredibly evident in the video just how much they love and care for each other. Zeke immediately runs into his big brother's arms, who is visibly stunned and speechless at the sight of him. "Everybody is here!" their younger sister screams while their baby brother jumps on top of his brothers and joins their embrace. "After 75 days straight and 147 days since March, we are all together and Zeke is out," Danielle wrote on Facebook.