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Taking Flight: A Second Fight

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MEDFORD, Ore. — North Medford High School students always fight for their sparrows.  Three years ago, that’s exactly what they did for 4-year-old Jared Ramirez-Ponce.

At the time Jared was battling a rare form of childhood cancer.  Within a year and a half of his diagnosis he went into remission.  But his dad, Juan Ramirez, said there are always concerns moving forward, “There’s always that thing in the back of your head – you’re thinking what if?  What if it comes back?”

At North Medford High School’s Sparrow Clubs assembly this year, Oregon Director Matt Sampson, explained that ‘what if’ had become a reality, “It looked like he had won the battle, it did, but just this past summer, in July, his cancer returned.”

As the cancer returns, Sparrow Clubs is returning to North Medford High School.  Once again asking students there to fight for Jared, now 7-years-old.

In just four months Jared has gone through 20 cycles of chemotherapy.  It’s another round of chemo keeping him from the assembly where North Medford Students vow to make a difference for the second time.

Kendell Erb, a senior at North Medford High School, remembers Jared from her freshman year.  ”It went from sadness to happiness.  Sadness that he’s back in this same boat, but happiness that we get the chance to fight again,” she said.

Jared’s dad said he is thankful to the students and Sparrow Clubs, “There’s more feeling inside than there are words to say thank you for what you’re doing for my kid and other kids.”