WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - No parent is prepared for a child's death. But cancer is the number one disease killer of children. Every day in our country, 46 children are diagnosed with a form of cancer.
Now, a Wilmington couple is honoring the death of their infant son by leading an effort to help families cope with the same tragedy they have endured.
Liam Fredric Batten proved he was a fighter from the moment he was born Sept. 21, weighing just four pounds and six weeks before he was scheduled to arrive. Two weeks later, Kim and Bryan Batten took their newborn son home.
But three months later, they were back in the hospital where Liam faced another battle, the battle to live after doctors discovered he had a rare brain tumor. Liam Batten was only six months old when he lost his fight with cancer on April 3, 2015.
"It is like, as a parent, it is your worst nightmare. You think this can't be happening to me so I think in that moment, your whole world stops," said Kim.
AT/RT is what took Liam away from Bryan and Kim. Kim says her son's short time on earth taught her family and friends much about strength, love and how precious life is. And his death has led them to honor their son by trying to help other families who have or are currently facing a similar tragedy in their lives.
They have created the Liam Strong Charity Beach Run. Proceeds will help in pediatric cancer research and the North Carolina Children's Hospital in Chapel Hill, the place where Liam spent his last days.
"We wanted to give back to them and honor him, they touched us in more ways that we ever thought possible and they come your family," said Kim.
President Dwight D. Eisenhower once said there is no tragedy in life like the death of a child. Liam will always be a part of Kim and Bryan's lives.
And by honoring their young son, they are continuing his fight and the fight of millions, to hopefully one day rid cancer from the face of the earth and sparing other parents the tragedy loss of losing their beautiful child, like Liam Fredric Batten.
The Liam Strong Charity Beach Run will take place Saturday, March 18, at Wrightsville Beach. Click here to register or learn more about the event.