Hundreds of birthday cards have poured in over the last few days for Lucas "Bear" Cervone, the 5-year-old Chicago boy battling incurable cancer. Now, one celebrity has joined in on sending the young boy a special greeting for his birthday on May 7.
"Modern Family" star Ariel Winter posted on both her Instagram and Twitter accounts Friday, encouraging her fans to send mail to Lucas.
"Let's use the power of the Internet for good today, spread the word & help give Lucas the best birthday by sending him well wishes," Winter wrote.
Commenters from all over the world chimed in to support Lucas, who lives in the Belmont-Cragin neighborhood. Fans from India, Norway, Canada, Sweden, and more, all shared well-wishes and said they were sending cards. Winter commented later to thank everyone for their support.
"Love everyone's response here! This is amazing! Yes everyone send him a birthday card," she wrote.
Lucas was first diagnosed with pediatric leukemia in August 2012.
"He fought through three very long years and very intensive years of treatment and he won, he beat it," said Lucas' father, Anthony Cervone.
But a short time later, he was diagnosed with another form of cancer, this one incurable. After a stem cell transplant in November 2015 and months in the hospital overcoming viruses, Lucas finally returned home, celebrating Christmas in February with his older brother, Franco.
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Then, just a few weeks ago, the Cervone family received the news it had been dreading: doctors found an incurable tumor near Lucas' heart.
"It has been decided that there are no further curative options," the family wrote Monday. "In simplest terms, there is nothing more we can do to fight this. We have started palliative chemo to attempt to slow the growth of the tumor. The tumor is wrapped around the pulmonary artery and is pressing on Lucas' heart."
The family asked for birthday cards to help make Lucas' sixth birthday very special, saying he loves to receive them and they wanted to surpass his 500-card record set on Christmas. Since they shared Lucas' story, cards have poured in.
And while the family said they appreciate the support for their little boy, they have also asked for privacy and that anyone who wanted to donate more than cards instead donate to some of the many organizations that have helped the family through their difficult journey. (See the list here)
Letters and cards can be sent to:
Lucas Bear Heroes or Lucas Bear
40 E. Chicago Ave., No. 162
Chicago, IL 60611