CANFIELD, Ohio (WYTV) – September is childhood cancer awareness month. One Canfield family understands the importance of cancer awareness and support. Their lives changed in the blink of an eye when their four-year-old daughter was up against an impossible diagnosis.
Melina Edenfield was full of life. Her sassy personality was almost as fiery as her long red hair. But on May 22, everything changed out of nowhere. Melina had never had any health issues, but that day doctors found a diffuse tumor on her little brain.
“That’s when they looked at us and pretty much said we have no answers,” said Michelle Edenfield, Melina’s mother.
There was nothing doctors could do. Her type of tumor was too vast and aggressive.
Melina passed away June 24. Just one month and two days after her first visit to the doctor.
“If she would’ve been given a 1% chance to fight, she would have fought,” Michelle said. “Just because she’s not here doesn’t mean there is not a minute in any day that we don’t think about her or advocate for somebody in some way.”
To turn their pain into purpose, her family created the Melina Michelle Edenfield Foundation. The motto to the foundation is Choose Joy for Melina. Money raised goes toward research.
“We said to her honey, we are going to help little kids. We are going to help doctors to learn to find answers to this because she knew they couldn’t find answers for her,” Michelle said.
Putting “joy’ in the foundation’s motto is a testament to Melina. Her parents say that is who she was and the choice her family makes every day since she’s been gone.
“She wasn’t going to let anything stand in her way. And so even after she is gone, she’s going to beat it through the foundation,” said Melina’s father, Keith Edenfield.
More information about the Melina Edenfield Foundation can be found on their website. You can also follow the foundation on Facebook.