Derrick Chisholm is 8 years old and in third grade at Jacob G. Smith Elementary School. When he was just 5 years old, Derrick was diagnosed with a brain tumor called pilocytic astocytoma that was pressing on his optic pathways and impacting his vision. Within a month of his diagnosis, Derrick was completely blind. He was referred to the Dwaine & Cynthia Willett Children’s Hospital of Savannah for treatment. Derrick received chemotherapy to shrink the tumor, but it could not be completely removed. He had his last round of chemo in 2015, but continues to have tests, scans, and spinal taps to monitor the tumor.
Despite losing his sight and having frequent hospital visits, Derrick remains an energetic and outgoing little boy with contagious enthusiasm. He loves anything related to music. At just 8 years old, he already plays drums, keyboard, saxophone, and guitar. He also leads a youth praise band at his church and has learned to read music in braille.
Derrick’s mother, Utesa, says the team at the Willett Children’s Hospital at Memorial University Medical Center has gone above and beyond to make sure all of Derrick’s needs are met and to keep him as comfortable as possible. Derrick continues to stay strong and maintain his cheerful personality. He is an inspiration to all who meet him.
YOUR support makes a difference! Whether you are able to ride, volunteer, or become a virtual rider, you are making an impact in the lives of cancer patients in need. Even if you can't ride, you can make a difference by sponsoring a rider and making a donation.
All proceeds raised for Patrick's Ride will benefit children and families with cancer at The Dwaine and Cynthia Willett Children's Hospital of Savannah and the Curtis and Elizabeth Anderson Cancer Institute at Memorial University Medical Center.
Since its founding, Patrick's Ride has raised more than $605,000 to benefit cancer patients. The funds raised have covered the cost for families to participate in the Harvest of Hope Retreat, underwritten counseling services, helped to renovate a waiting room for children with cancer, and provided funds to pay for fuel cards to get to and from treatments and meal vouchers.
THANK YOU for the positive impact you are making!