PHS reaches out to help Joshua fight tumor

Joshua Johnston, shown here at Doernbecher Children's Hospital, has inspired Rhythmic Mode, Pendleton High School's dance team, to dance their hearts out for the Fall Preview at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the PHS gym in a fundraiser for the teacher's son. <i>Photo contributed by the Johnston family</i>

Joshua Johnston, the 4-year-old son of Glenn and Deana Johnston, has felt the embrace of strangers as he battles Wilms tumor, a cancerous tumor of the kidney.

Students at Pendleton High School, where Joshua's father teaches, have held silent fundraisers for Joshua and also donated all the proceeds from Mud Wars to the family.

"The entire student body and staff have helped," PHS teacher John Remington said.

Wilms tumor occurs in children and has forced Joshua to undergo radical surgery. He's continuing treatment at Doernbecher Children's Hospital in Portland.

"The doctors took out his right kidney and remaining tumor, one adrenal gland, a small chunk of liver and part of the vena cava," his parent's reported on Joshua's blog.

He'll have his 14-week check up Friday and a chemotherapy treatment Monday. The family said the prayers and support from the community has helped them, as has Joshua's courage.

The next fundraising event for Joshua will be Rhythmic Mode's annual Fall Preview at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at Warberg Court of Pendleton High School. The high school dance team, as well as the younger dancers of Junior Jam, along with their director and coach Debbie Kishpaugh are eager to help the Johnston family.

At the Fall Preview, there will be a 50/50 drawing, a raffle and a bake sale with all the proceeds going to the Johnstons. In addition, an account for Joshua has been established at the Pendleton office of Schools Plus Community Credit Union for those who can't attend the Fall Preview but would like to help Joshua.

To keep track of Joshua and his battle, visit www.joshuasupdate.blogspot.com.

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