St. Jude patient considered a fighter by his family - WPSD Local 6: Your news, weather, and sports authority

St. Jude patient considered a fighter by his family

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PADUCAH -

Ryan Auten loves planes. The aspiring pilot goes to Central Elementary School in Draffenville and 11 months ago he was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.

He's a St. Jude patient now, and this isn't the first challenge he has faced. Ryan was born prematurely at just 24 weeks and weighed all of one pound and four ounces.

"Several instances where they didn't think he was going to make it," said his father Mike Auten. "We got called up two different times, but he fought every time and his will to live is strong and he's a fighter and what he's fighting today is just a testament that he's a fighter."

Helping him in this latest fight is the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

"Just an incredible place," said Mike. "I mean, the level of professionalism and the care that they give there is just world class. So we caught it in its early stages and Ryan is winning his battle and he's going to win his battle with cancer."

When he's not flying or fishing, Ryan likes baseball. He compares beating cancer to a home run he hit last spring.

"I was like still around 3rd base and I was like running and running and I slid and it was like ahhhhhhh, ka-bam!" said Ryan.

Ryan and his family wanted to thank the Collings Foundation of Massachusetts. The group helped make  the flight possible.

You can help support Ryan and the other children of St. Jude by buying a ticket for the St. Jude Dream Home by clicking here.

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