Weeks after doctors diagnosed 6-year-old Kalea Avery with brain cancer, her little brother Noah started to complain of head pain.
Duncan and Nohea Avery, their parents, received horrible news last Thursday: Noah also has cancer in the same place his sister does, according to The Los Angeles Times. Doctors found the growth during an MRI scan of the boy, who also started to have trouble walking.
A biopsy is still needed to confirm if Noah has medulloblastoma, the same cancer as his big sister Kalea, according to The Beach Review. Underlying the rarity of something like this happening, medical experts told the outlet that they can't think of a similar case.
Duncan Avery told The Beach Review that he and his wife "were both in shock" when they received the news.
According to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, between 70 to 80 percent of children who come down with medulloblastoma are expected to survive.
Their father said he's left wondering how this could have happened.
“How could two kids in 14 days have the exact same tumor?" he told The Los Angeles Times.
The family created a GoFundMe page to help cover the sudden medical expenses soon coming their way. According to the post, both children have already had a surgery to remove their tumors — but will still need radiation and chemotherapy treatment.
"The Childrens Hospital Los Angeles oncologists, the pediatric neurosurgeon , and her pediatrician have never encountered siblings having a diagnosis of brain tumor within weeks of each other," the page reads.
Despite the huge shock, Nohea Avery told KTLA that her family is going to keep fighting.
"I don't know how I'm going to get through this," the mom said. "But you do — you find a way.
"You look at your children, you hold them and you just find a way."
Nohea Avery said she's also trying to find a silver lining in the outpouring of support directed at her family, according to The Beach Review. So far, her family's GoFundMe page has raised over $100,000.
“At least once a day I will tell my husband, we are so lucky to be where we are and to have the support with family and friends and neighbors and the community behind us,” she told the newspaper. “We realized we are so lucky to be in this position.”
The family is now going through genetic tests to determine if the family is predisposed to develop brain cancers, as reported by The Los Angeles Times. Duncan Avery tried to be optimistic when considering that possibility.
“Maybe the reason we’re put on this Earth," he told The Los Angeles Times, "is so we can find the gene that causes medulloblastoma."