BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — A group of Western New Yorkers safely gathered on Saturday outside Hospice Buffalo to support an 11-year-old Buffalo boy who is fighting a rare brain cancer.
DaJuan “Soliel” Brown was diagnosed with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG) last May. He has been hospice care since Fall 2019.
Doctors say he has an inoperable tumor. While fighting cancer, Soliel attended school at International School 45, in Buffalo, until February.
"He loves school, he's a fighter, and he loves learning," Soliel's mother Dashaun Baldwin said. "Even when he was undergoing cancer treatment and was in a wheelchair, he still wanted to wash the dishes at home. He's a fighter indeed."
The community came to the hospice to pray and brought signs of encouragement for Soliel. Other attendees remained in their cars, sharing a virtual prayer.
"Everyone's doing parades these days. So let's go there and social distance appropriately," co-organizer Jessica Majewski said. "We felt pretty determined to at least walk so he could see the people there and see the love and support."
Everyone that stepped out of their cars walked around the hospice seven times as a reference to the Biblical story of Jericho.
"It really brightened up his day," Baldwin said. "Seeing everybody. come out here, he had a smirk on his face from my understanding yesterday. And that's his smile."
Anyone wanting to help Soliel and his family with medical expenses can visit their GoFundMe page.