Friends rally in support for 2-year-old Aubree

LOUP CITY - - While most children her age were getting up bright and early Dec. 25, excited to open their Christmas presents, little Aubree Carlsen was about to receive a totally different kind of gift - a gift that doctors hoped would save her life. Aubree, the 2-year-old daughter of Chris and Kayla Carlsen of Loup City, was diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia Dec. 24, 2013, and started her first round of chemotherapy on Christmas Day at Children’s Hospital in Omaha. Aubree remained in the Omaha hospital until Jan. 2. However, her weakened immune system left her prone to illness, and she was admitted back to the hospital Jan. 6, but this time only for a couple of days. She and her mommy had to remain in Omaha to be close to the doctors for her treatments. Aubree has responded very well to the treatments, though her mom reports the high dose of steroids has made her quite moody and increased her appetite - “but, if that's the worse we have to deal with we will take it.” On Jan. 23, Aubree finally got to return home from Omaha. While her mom says there is still a long road ahead for the little girl, she has won the first battle! On Jan. 29, Aubree returned to Omaha to meet with the doctor and determine what the next phase of chemo would be. She was started on three weeks of chemo treatments, along with an oral chemo for the next 28 days called Mercaptopurine. She also has a weekly spinal tap. Kayla reports that the doctor is very pleased with Aubree’s progress. Needless to say, the frequent trips to Omaha, hotel stays and other expenses quickly take a toll on a family’s bank account. Chris’s co-workers at BD in Broken Bow want to help, so they have begun a fundraising campaign selling orange Leukemia support bracelets imprinted with the words “No One Fights Alone.” The bracelets sell for $5, and 100 percent of the profits will go directly to Chris and his family to help defray some of these costs. Anyone interested in purchasing a bracelet in support of “team Aubree” may contact Barb Pellor, Ann Williams or Korrena Jones. Aubree still has a long fight ahead of her, but friends and family want to let her know she is not alone. To follow her progress, find Team Aubree on Facebook.