6 Year Old Cancer Survivor Applauded by Classmates on School Return

John Oliver Zippay, 6, has successfully won his battle with cancer. After his final round of chemotherapy, young John Oliver received a heart warming reception from his fellow classmates. 

After being diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia at the age of 3, John Oliver had been constantly in and out of school while fiercely fighting off the disease.

Receiving his final treatment on December 27th 2019, John Oliver was able to celebrate his victory with his peers in Newbury, Ohio. Upon arrival, the halls inside the school were packed with pupils and teachers cheering and applauding the bravery and success of the young boy. 

At the end of the hallway awaited the proud parents of the brave young boy, John and Megan Zippay. His parents were delighted with the news, after a very difficult 3 years.

“He’s doing great! Yeah, he’s feeling better. A lot of his side effects over the years involved his legs from the steroids and he’s doing great.” John told Fox 8.

“He had a meta-port in his chest so he wasn’t able to do any physical activity for three years. So it was hard for him, had to sit back for gym class and things,” they said.

Family friend, Shannon Formanski, helped to organise the school celebration event. Formanski said: “He loves planes, he’s kind of an old soul, he loves WWII and all that kind of stuff so he’s really excited to be able to travel a bit more and do that kind of stuff.”

Mother, Megan, also commented her excitement and relief, saying “You want that for your child, to grow up and get dirty and play outside and have fun and we kept him in a bubble so we’re excited. Looking forward to the future and having our little boy back.” 

A video montage was also presented in a school assembly, showcasing John Oliver’s courageous battle. Principal Patrick Gannon revealed how excited his friends were to be able to have him back at school with them. “Him having to miss some of the time was tough, but the class was just so happy to see him come back,” he said.

Following his final treatment in hospital, John Oliver began the celebrations when he was able to ring the bell on the ward – which is done when young children have their final treatments. His father said “And that’s when I told him, ‘okay buddy, you gotta ring the bell. Ring it for all the kids who didn’t have the chance to ring it” and it’s like everything went into slow motion for me. He rang it so hard, he was so proud.” 

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Written by

George Day