Super Sam's family gives back with blood drive

FULTON, Mo. - 6-year-old Sam Santhuff is more popularly known as "Super Sam."

Last week, Sam underwent experimental treatment for Rhabdomysarcoma, a type of blood cancer that requires a bone marrow transplant.

Now, the family is trying to give back to all those who have given to him.

They collected blood at the First Christian Church in Fulton, but the Santhuff family is looking at the broader picture, and arranged for the Red Cross and the group Delete Blood Cancer, and organization dedicated to bone marrow donations, to hold the drive.

The people fill the beds, the blood fills the bags, but the beads show the struggle.

Cassie Santhuff, Super Sam's mother said, "It was a medication to manage the side effects of chemo, and he went into anaphylactic shock."

Santhuff remembers many of the moments the beads represent, as each one of them is a step in her son's nine month battle.

"That was given to him for his 12 1/2 hour surgery. All of these kids, they fight with strength that adults just can't understand. I mean, he's extremely sick and he just doesn't complain."

Since Sam uses a pint of blood every day, Cassie and her husband Matthew wanted a way to return the generosity of others.

Joyce Jones of Delete Blood Cancer said, "When it gets to that point, they need a bone marrow and stem cell transplant, that's usually their last ditch effort for survival, to give them a second chance at life."

Santhuff said, "It's really not about what you have in life, it's about what you can give. You go through something like this, and it teaches you what life is really about. It's about giving, not receiving. So we want to give back in any way we can."

The family is also hosting 100 Days of Comfort. Sam is in 100 days of isolation after his new treatment, so he suggested collecting things that make him feel comfortable,
such as blankets, stuffed animals, and movies to give to other kids in the same situation. 

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