Of 10 children diagnosed with cancer: 2 will not survive 5 years, 1 will pass the 5 year mark but die a few years later, and 95% of the survivors will suffer serious and chronic health issues by the age of 45.
Shooting for Flashes of Hope at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, one quickly realizes that these numbers are not statistics. Instead they are the children and their families who contend with this reality every day. One sunny afternoon this month, i arrived at Roswell to photograph as part of the ongoing Flashes of Hope photography project. Waiting for a few Buffalo Sabres to arrive for the photo shoot, I heard a commotion in the hallway where all of the kids and their families were waiting. Steve Ott, Pat Kaleta and Marcus Foligno had arrived and they dove right in--tousling hairless heads, signing whatever the families brought to sign--actively engaging every child, sibling, mom and dad. As the father of a hockey loving son and daughter, there was a familiarity and normalcy to this experience that I wanted to capture and preserve.