Children’s Hospital Association’s annual Family Advocacy Day brought patient families from children’s hospitals across the country to tell their stories to lawmakers on Capitol Hill July 23 and 24, 2012. Learn more at http://bit.ly/MvQxLV bit.ly/MvQxLV

Akron boy, mom will be Akron Children’s voice on Capitol Hill

From left, Bernett L.Williams, vice president for external affairs, Charice Fort and her 12-year-old son, Caleb Thurman, CEO Bill Considine and Charlie Solley, government relations director.

When Charice Fort and her 12-year-old son, Caleb Thurman, travel to Washington, D.C., June 18 – 20, they hope to tell Ohio lawmakers that safeguards like Ohio’s Bureau of Children with Medical Handicaps (BCMH) have made all the difference in their life since Caleb was diagnosed with several chronic illnesses.

Busy on the Hill for Family Advocacy Day

The Froats family at the Family Advocacy Gala Night

What an amazing and busy couple of days it was for my family and I in Washington, DC. Our days were filled with interviews, sight-seeing, downtime, and speaking with state legislators.

On our second day in DC, we had radio interviews scheduled right after breakfast. I spoke with several radio stations from the Cleveland and Akron area and talked about the Children’s Hospital Association’s Family Advocacy Day.

First day in DC for Family Advocacy Day

Tyler with his family in front of the I Spy museum in Washington, DC

Yesterday we left our home in Ohio to leave for Family Advocacy Day. We landed at Reagan International Airport around 6. We then we picked up our bags and took a cab to the JW Marriott Hotel in DC.

Highland High graduate headed to Capitol Hill this week

Tyler Froats

At first glance, Tyler Froats seems like the typical 19-year-old boy, with one foot still in his teen years and the other foot stepping timidly into adulthood. A 2010 graduate of Highland High School, Tyler is taking online college courses and loves to write songs and play his guitar. He works at Dick’s Sporting Goods and has an older sister and younger brother. But Tyler has had anything but a typical, carefree childhood due to a 13-year battle with cancer.

Hoping to make a difference in DC

Tyler with Ray Horner of WAKR

Wow, what an awesome week! On Monday I got the chance to go to downtown Cleveland and professionally record my song at the Tri-C. I had so much fun and enjoyed the time I had. Yet, with all fun, time flies by quickly.

Although bone marrow transplant kept me from my senior prom, still got to go with “this girl”

Tyler and Erica at prom

My senior year of high school I asked my friend Erica to the prom. We agreed that I would take her to my prom and she would take me to her prom. However, due to the timing of my bone marrow transplant, I was unable to go to my prom. But the following year she ended up asking me to her prom.