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Businesses display support for North Platte boy battling cancer

#WeDontQuit
Published: Oct. 18, 2021 at 5:52 PM CDT
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NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP) -Four local businesses have signs located on Jeffers Street with encouraging words for a North Platte boy battling cancer. Parlor Tattoos, Elite Lifestyles, Enzo Athletic Performance and Lowman’s Auto Repair have joined together displaying signs supporting Grady.

Grady Simants is battling brain cancer. He was diagnosed with glioblastoma brain cancer just before his seventh birthday in 2015. In March of 2019, his cancer returned.

“He was cancer-free for about a year and a half,” said Grady’s father Bill Simants. “Since then, he has gone through various trials in Memphis, TN, Augusta, GA and Omaha.”

Grady’s journey has captured the hearts of over 2,000 people online.

“With something like this, we thought we had to be alone,” said Bill Simants. “You may have support from your neighbors, but a small community like North Platte rallies behind something like this.”

Grady’s father shares that spreading awareness about brain cancer is crucial. Bill Simants hosts a slow-pitch softball tournament called Mayday for Grady. This year, the tournament will be held in Hastings.

“One of the many things parents and kids fighting pediatric brain cancer go through is raising awareness,” said Bill Simants. “People know October is for breast cancer awareness, but not too many people know about gray in May or gold to support pediatric brain cancer.”

Grady’s father has worked with various organizations to raise more awareness in Nebraska. One organization is the Team Jack Foundation. The Team Jack Foundation has raised millions of dollars for child brain cancer research while raising awareness about the disease.

“It is about getting the clinical trials to Nebraska,” said Bill Simants. “There is no higher concentration of brain cancer than in the Great Plains in Nebraska.”

The latest update on Grady’s journey was posted on his Facebook page “Grady’s Avengers” on Oct. 14.

According to the post, Grady’s radiation treatments have “significantly reduced cancerous nodules and signs of leptomeningeal disease are also greatly reduced in the brain and spine.”

For more updates on Grady, you can like or follow his Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Gradysavengers/

“Every time someone asks about Grady, it fills my cup up, and people haven’t moved on,” said Bill Simants. “He is still on people’s minds.”

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