Austin Park's Battle with Rhabdomyosarcoma Cancer - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

Austin Park's Battle with Rhabdomyosarcoma Cancer


FOX 54 first brought you the story of Austin Parks this spring, a recent high school graduate battling stage 4 cancer. For many, the term "stage 4" is a reason to give up hope. 

It’s a journey many of us will be fortunate not to go through...the fight against cancer. But for 19-year-old Austin Parks, it’s a battle he’s been fighting for more than a year.

“When you hear about a child that’s stage four or anyone with stage four, it’s defeat for some,” says his mom, Melissa Parks. 

Stage 4 Rhabdomyosarcoma is a rare form of cancer that affects the connective tissues in the body. This star athlete had to turn in his football cleats for intense chemotherapy and spend days at a time in the hospital

But treatment wasn’t a journey he had to walk with by himself, his support system walked with him every step of the way.

“That means a lot to have a lot of folks behind me. They played a big role in this if I didn’t have anybody behind me I don’t think I wouldn’t have made it this far,” says Parks. “It feels like a dream come true. I’ve been waiting on this day for the longest and the days I was in the hospital I was waiting for this day and it came.”

His parents say his previous scans show the cancer is gone. For this former athlete who has his eyes to get back onto the field, he wants to pursue a career in pediatric healthcare.

“I want to be motivation for the kids. I just want them to know they can do it that’s why I rung the bell so loud,” he explains. And he hopes his message to everyone speaks even louder. “Don’t give up, always have hope. Don’t ever give up.”

Despite Parks going through Chemotherapy, he was able to graduate with his high school classmates in 2016. But because of the treatment, he had to postpone College for a year. He says he will be enrolling in East Georgia State College in Statesboro this upcoming Fall to major in Physical Therapy.

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