Thursday , 5 August 2021
Princess Emma looks to collect donations as her mom Cathie-Leigh Humphreys points out a long parade of vehicles on Thursday.

Two years on, Princess Emma continues to fight DIPG and fundraise

Princess Emma looks to collect donations as her mom Cathie-Leigh Humphreys points out a long parade of vehicles on Thursday.

It was a celebration of a grim anniversary for a local family on Thursday, as the Humphreys raised money toward Bonnyville’s health care delivery.

Princess Emma was diagnosed with DIPG, a rare inoperable brain tumour, on May 28, 2018, yet two years later and against all the odds, she is still here and still fighting.

“There’s no explanation. The only thing the doctors can tell us is that we’ve got a miracle. And they can’t give any other explanation besides that, so we are basking in it,” said Emma’s mom Cathie-Leigh.

“And this community has never not shown up for Emma. And that is something that we appreciate so much because we’re sure that it’s love and prayers that are carrying me through and this community has stepped up in every way.”

Now five-years-old, Emma and a small group of family and friends raised $4165 for the Bonnyville Health Foundation to celebrate Toonie for Two Years.

The parade was full of classic cars thanks to the Bonnyville Gear Grabbers and Cold Lake Cruisers auto clubs as well as emergency vehicles who sounded their sirens.

Emma has always been Cathie-Leigh and David’s princess since adopting her when she was 15 months old.

The moniker Princess Emma just seemed natural and at Thursday’s event she got to meet Disney princesses as well while she donned a half police, half dress outfit.

“We are ever so grateful for our community. You guys have showed up every single time for anything that we’ve needed. And it truly is overwhelming,” said Humphreys.

“Emma has been doing phenomenally well…Unfortunately, radiation did take a bit of a toll on Emma’s brain function we found out, so she’s doing kindergarten again. We enjoyed kindergarten so much we’re going to do it twice.”

Left to right: Cathie-Leigh, Emma, and David Humphreys.

Only ten per cent of kids diagnosed with DIPG live past two years and only one per cent survive after five years.

Pictures of four children with the same disease were set up on the sidewalk. They were diagnosed around the same time as Emma, but are no longer here today.

“These families were families that we followed closely were inspirations to us and watch their fight. And we wanted to pay homage to them as well because their stories are very much what our story was supposed to look like, and we’re grateful that it doesn’t and that we have today and hopefully many tomorrow’s left with Emma.”

About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.