Over the course of an hour, Aidan Chin went from being a normal 11-year-old to feeling an overwhelming sense of fatigue and sickness.
His parents, thinking it was a cold, took him to BC Children’s Hospital for precautionary reasons. That night, the Chin family was given the worst news of their lives.
Aidan was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia and had to begin cancer treatment right away. Over the following three-and-a-half years, he endured many rounds of chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
In July 2014, Aidan finally had his VAD port, used to draw blood and for infusions when large amounts of fluids are needed, such as in chemotherapy, removed, signifying the end of his cancer treatment. “It feels like I’ve gotten over a huge hill,” says Aidan. “I hope I can now go on to live my life to the fullest because not everyone can.”
Aidan, once a shy, soft-spoken boy, is now prepared to give back to the hospital and show his thanks. “I wanted to let BC Children’s Hospital know how much they helped me medically and mentally.”
One of the ways Aidan gives back is by lending his wisdom to fellow teens suffering from cancer. “I am in an Oncology Teen group at the hospital and one time a fellow teen asked me about treatment. I felt good inside knowing that I had answered questions that this other teen could now put to rest.”
Although his daily oral chemo is over, Aidan still visits BC Children’s Hospital every few months to ensure his cancer has not returned. "I am happy that I have survived. I am done the stressful part of the radiation, the oral chemo and IV chemo. I just want to be strong, healthy and active,” Aidan says.
In September 2015, Aidan was announced as the Children’s Miracle Network Champion Child ambassador for BC Children’s Hospital as part of the Champions Across Canada program presented by Walmart.
As BC’s representative in the Champions program, Aidan will share his inspiring story of dealing with a cancer diagnosis at age 11 and living through three years of cancer treatment. He will serve as an ambassador for BC Children’s Hospital, representing the more than 84,000 children treated at the hospital each year.
As part of this role, Aidan travelled with his family in February 2016 to Toronto to meet with 11 other Canadian Champions, and then to Orlando, Florida to join the 50 American Champions. Champions help raise awareness of the importance of children’s hospitals and the work done by caregivers and researchers at children’s hospitals across North America.
To learn more about Aidan’s cancer journey, watch his story below.
Aidan is a thoughtful and creative teen, who has been through more health challenges in his 16 years of life than most adults will see in their lifetime. Aidan believes that cancer treatment has changed the way he views life’s challenges and experiences. He shares his perspective on life after cancer treatment in a flipbook he's titled, "Survivorship".