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From left are Aidan,4, his mother Tara, sister Caitlin, 8, father Patrick, dog Trooper, and brother Ryan, 12.At the home of the Dunion family in Amity township Wednesday evening. Patrick and Tara Dunion's son Aidan, 4, has an inoperable brain stem tumor Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG). Photo by Ben Hasty

From left are Aidan,4, his mom Tara, sister Caitlin, 8, dad Patrick, dog Trooper, and brother Ryan, 12. At the home of the Dunion family in Amity township Wednesday evening. Patrick and Tara Dunion’s son Aidan, 4, has an inoperable brain stem tumor Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG). Photo by Ben Hasty (April 2014)

 

What is the Ronald McDonald House?

The Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House supports families of seriously ill children by creating a community of comfort and hope. 

Aidan’s Story

Aidan’s Avengers was established in memory of Aidan Dunion (forever 4) from Douglassville, PA.  In August 2014, Aidan passed away after a 10 month battle with a rare and aggressive brain tumor-DIPG (the same type of tumor that took the life of basketball player Lauren Hill).  This tumor has a 0% survival rate and the life expectancy from diagnosis is 9-12 months. 

Our mission is “to raise awareness and funding for research programs that focus on childhood brain cancers and to provide financial peace of mind for families affected by childhood brain cancer.  If you would like to read more about our precious Angel Aidan and our upcoming events, here is our website: www.AidansAvengers.org or his facebook page:  www.facebook.com/AidansAvengers

Aidan’s journey began at CHOP when he needed to receive 30 days of radiation.  A few months later, in May 2014, Aidan required emergency brain surgery and had to stay at CHOP for 2 weeks.  We were fortunate enough to live within driving distance so we did not need to utilize the Ronald McDonald House.   However, on our floor at the hospital there was a Ronald McDonald Room that provided a space for families to “escape”.   Local restaurants & businesses in the Philadelphia area would bring meals, snacks, & beverages to the Ronald McDonald house or room for families.  It was always a much needed break.

We noticed a basket asking for aluminum tab collections.  We learned that the Ronald McDonald House collected tabs and the money collected from turning them in helps support the many Ronald McDonald houses. 10644900_10202846327860204_3827822261053975424_n

Avengers Unite

Aidan’s terminal cancer diagnosis was devastating; however, his fight united our LARGE family.  Our family are all Philadelphia natives.  Aidan’s grandfather was a Philly cop for over 30 years and a majority of our family still lives in the Philadelphia area.   Over the decades, our once close-knit family drifted apart, but after word spread of Aidan’s fight, we all came together to support him.   At Aidan’s funeral, the family decided to start a reunion in September (Childhood Cancer Awareness month) at Cape May Point Lighthouse. 

We credit Aidan with bringing our family back together and wanted to do something in his memory.

10614186_10202282124564605_1439685723536841495_nRemembering the tab collections we saw at CHOP, we put the challenge out to the family to start collecting tabs and bring them to our 1st Annual Family Reunion.   The challenge was in full force and we were blown away with the pictures we were seeing of what family collected in 2 short months.

This gave us the idea to encourage all of Aidan’s Avengers to collect their tabs and they could drop them off at any event we were hosting.

In May of 2015, we hosted our first big fundraiser-Aidan’s Avenger Golf Tournament and Banquet.  Once again they came through and brought tabs by the bucket loads.  One family member had his fellow Philadelphia Fire Department officers collecting for us.  (We raised over $11,000 for pediatric brain cancer research).

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Helping Ronald McDonald House

After ONE year of collecting tabs, on Monday, January 18th, Aidan’s Avengers will be dropping off a large collection of tabs to the Ronald McDonald House in Philadelphia.

How can you help the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House support more than 2,000 families each year? Collect soda pop tabs is one easy way! It’s simple. It’s low cost. It’s a great way for anyone to get involved. The Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House supports families of seriously ill children by creating a community of comfort and hope.

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Resources:
http://www.philarmh.org/get-involved/other-ways-to-help/collect-tabs/

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