William was diagnosed with medulloblastoma in April 2001 at the age of 14. He underwent brain surgery, radiation and chemotherapy before finishing treatment the following June. In March 2004, at the age of 17, William relapsed with tumors in his spinal cord. He endured more chemo, a stem cell transplant and radiation over the course of nine months. After recovering from treatment, William graduated from high school with his class in May 2005.
William then became a college student at Auburn University, majoring in Chemical Engineering and minoring in Sustainability and Spanish. His persistence and determination were an inspiration to all as he tackled the late effects of cancer treatment in addition to college classes. A routine MRI in December 2010 revealed tumors throughout William’s brain and spinal cord. He enrolled in a clinical trial, but his tumors continued to grow. William began another chemo regimen, lived life to the fullest, and graduated from Auburn in May 2011. By January 2012, his disease was almost gone; he was able to start a part-time job in chemical engineering while continuing chemotherapy.
One morning in April 2012, William woke up with sudden onset of disease progression. He began yet another chemo regimen, but years of harsh treatments had taken their toll on his body. After an 11-year battle with cancer, William passed away suddenly on May 2, 2012, surrounded by his family.
William enjoyed spending time with friends and family, and he loved making people laugh. He faced much adversity in his 25 years, but his hope and determination inspired so many.