Forsyth 5K celebrates boy’s life, raises money for cancer treatment



CUMMING, Ga. — Four-year-old Will Abernathy, who has been battling stage IV neuroblastoma cancer, was shown immense community support on Saturday morning, Nov. 3.

For the second year, members of the community, friends and family took part in a 5K and children’s fun run fundraiser held at First Baptist Church Cumming.

Will’s mother, Melody Abernathy, said her son also wanted to run with his friends.

“He’s doing great,” Melody said. “He ran in the kids’ fun run. He’s even handling the chemo well. He takes it like he’s taking Tylenol.”

The money raised at the event helps the family pay treatment costs for Will at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids, Mich., she said.

Will’s father, Don Abernathy, Jr., said Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta doctors are also giving treatment to Will; otherwise, the family would have to keep flying to Michigan every three weeks for his treatment.

About 170 people attended the 5K event, organizer Rob Goldsmith said.

“He’s going through chemo and is still able to come out here and run with everyone,” Goldsmith said. “He’s an amazing kid.”

Susan Knight, Will’s teacher at First Baptist Cumming Weekday Preschool, said she was honored to be a part of the event.

“We all love Will and are honored to be here to help the Abernathy family,” Knight said. “Will is the bravest 4-year-old I know. He comes to school smiling with his head held high, and his blue eyes just get me.”

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