On January 24, 2015, Louis and Yvette Munoz took their teenage son Jacob to Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital to see if anything could be done to relieve what they thought was a bad sinus headache. After running a few tests, the doctor took the parents aside. A normal white blood cell count was 4,000 to 10,000, the doctor explained. Jacob’s was 375,000. It was a number so high that the doctor had never seen it before. Their son was dying of cancer.
In shock, Yvette fainted. When she came to, the heartbroken mother remembers her husband holding her and saying, “Look at me! Look at me! Everything is going to be alright. We are going to get through this. We have to have faith. He is going to be OK!”
Hours later, Jacob was transferred to the Intensive Care Unit at Texas Children’s Hospital where they began chemotherapy immediately. Upon his arrival, doctors and nurses swarmed around Jacob. New blood tests revealed a white blood count of 875K. A life saving emergency surgery was performed and chemo was started around 3:00 AM – not 24 hours after his initial diagnosis.
After more testing, Jacob’s diagnosed became more refined. He was suffering with a rare and aggressive form of Leukemia accounting for only 3% to 5% of all childhood cancers.
Fast forward one year.
Since January, 2015, Jacob’s parents have nearly lost him many, many times. Doctors repeatedly told them that their son was about to die; that he could slip away at any moment.
Hundreds of friends and thousands of strangers sent millions prayers to God.
“This child has taught me the truest meaning of strength, courage, determination, perseverance, hope, and faith,” Yvette says. “He will live life to the fullest. He will graduate high school. He will go to college. He will find true love, marry, and become a father. He will share his testimony of healing.”
Miraculously, after more ups and downs than any parent would dream of enduring even in their worst nightmare, Jacob’s cancer has been declared in remission.
“Since February of 2015, I have posted on the 24th of each month going over Jacob’s diagnosis and his condition,” Jacob’s mother posted. “I am usually very emotional because Jacob was not yet in remission. This 24th day of the month is different. My baby is in remission! Praise God! For the next 11 months he will continue part two of his fight. He will have spinal taps and administration of three chemo drugs into his spine every six weeks, daily home chemo, weekly mega doses of chemo pills, labs, and doctor visits … 13 months down and 11 months to go!”
On February 27, Jacob was able to ride a bike. On February 28, he was able to attend church and take communion with his family.
However, despite being declared in remission, Jacob has and still faces many, many challenges.
The teen has struggled with illness from chemo, internal bleeding, and a few life-threatening downturns even since February 24.
Nevertheless, Jacob’s mom remains a powerhouse of faith:
“Words alone cannot express our deepest gratitude for the absolutely overwhelming show of such love, compassion, and support,” she writes. “We thank you all for standing with us, fighting beside us, believing with us, fervently praying, mourning our lows and celebrating our highs. Thank you for becoming part of our family and for loving Jacob like one of your own. Each of you will hold a very special and dear place in our hearts! God bless you all!”