Wayland Academy will officially adopt Mason Abraham as its newest honorary varsity boys’ lacrosse team member on Sunday, September 26 at 10:00 a.m. inside the Wayland Academy Swan Library.
Wayland Academy will officially adopt Mason Abraham as its newest honorary varsity boys’ lacrosse team member on Sunday, September 26 at 10:00 a.m. inside the Wayland Academy Swan Library. Wayland senior Anthony Gilliam and sophomore Kat Fogarty will serve as student ambassadors to the Abraham family.
“We are beyond thrilled to welcome Mason, mom Heather, and sister Grace to the newly formed Wayland Academy Boys Lacrosse program,” said Josh Blumenthal, Director of Athletics and Head Lacrosse Coach. “We hope to create a sense of joy and comradery with our newfound friend through the connections of the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation.”
The Abraham family will be officially welcomed to the team during a draft party, at which time Mason will sign an official draft letter and receive Wayland jerseys. In addition, Mason will accept his official men’s lacrosse stick and ball as he gets set to practice and cheer on his teammates.
“We are so excited to include Mason in what will be our inaugural season of lacrosse. We look forward to including Mason in as many activities as his schedule allows and consider ourselves fortunate to have the entire Abraham family become a huge part of our Wayland family,” added Blumenthal.
Mason is a nine-year-old boy, who in June 2019 had an MRI done to see if they could figure out why he was having vision problems in his right eye. Following admission to American Family Children’s Hospital in Madison, WI, he took a downward turn, and two days later was having brain surgery to remove a newly discovered tumor. Despite eight hours of surgery, his pilocytic astrocytoma, a slow-growing type of primary central nervous system (CNS) tumor, one that starts in the brain or spinal cord rather than starting somewhere else in the body and spreading to the brain, was found to be intertwined in his optic nerves and sat on his pituitary gland. To date, Mason has completed three different chemo regiments, with the most recent one being part of a study. While on that drug, the tumor, unfortunately, grew 20 percent, with more chemo regimens yet to come. As a result, the tumor has caused complete loss of eyesight in his right eye, with the sight in his left eye slowly deteriorating. Most recently Mason had two brain surgeries because of hydrocephalus (a build-up of fluid in the brain). The first surgery was a six-hour unsuccessful attempt to do a tumor resection. Following this, a shunt was put in, and this is where the family presently stands.
The match between Mason and Wayland Academy was made during Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month (September) and was made possible through work with the Friends of Jaclyn (FOJ), a nonprofit organization based in New York. Their mission is to improve the quality of life for children battling pediatric brain tumors and other childhood cancers and to raise awareness through their Adopt-A-Child, Safe on the Sidelines, and Guardian Angel Programs.
Wayland Academy joins the rapidly growing list of FOJ school partners, which includes the University of Cincinnati (baseball), Amherst College (field hockey), University of New Hampshire (men’s ice hockey), University of Texas (basketball), and University of Florida (softball).
For more information on Friends of Jaclyn, visit their homepage at: friendsofjaclyn.org