Jacob’s journey: 9-year-old boy loses battle with cancer weeks after Christmas card request

Jacob Thompson will celebrate Christmas early this year. Doctors told his family in early October he probably only had a month to live. CREDIT: Courtesy Michelle Thompson Simard

PORTLAND, Maine-The precious 9-year-old boy who touched the hearts of people around the world when he asked for Christmas cards and well-wishes for his last holiday, has lost his battle with cancer.

Jacob Thompson, of Maine, passed away Sunday following his 4 year battle with neuroblastoma.

The family was told in October Jacob probably only had a month to live.  They decided to celebrate Christmas early. Jacob requested people celebrate with him by sending him cards.   “He got some cards from this Halloween, and he opened up and saw them and it was like getting a gift. He read it to us and had a big smile on his face and his nose scrunched,” Jacob’s father, Roger Guay, told CNN in a phone interview. “He was excited to see what people had to say and it just brightened his day.”

The family posted on their Facebook page Monday, We hope that Jacob’s story and the enormous outpouring of support from around the world will have a lasting impact on raising awareness for this disease. We hope that donations will be made, and a cure will be discovered as a result.  Each and every person who sent Jacob a Christmas card, a gift, a Facebook message or video, or a prayer made a difference in the final days of his life. You brought Jacob joy, and you brought us all optimism for the future. Thank you for taking the time, and taking an interest in our sweet boy’s journey. Sadly, there are many others like him that we hope you will continue to help.  To those wanting to make a donation in Jacob’s honor,  you can  do so at Operation Gratitude, to a penguin rescue group, or pay it forward in your community. Do something for others, donate blood and platelets, or use your talents to bring shelter, nourishment or joy to those in need in honor of Jacob’s memory.  And most importantly, always remember to #LiveLikeAPenguin for Jacob.

But Jacob has Stage 4 high-risk Neuroblastoma, and doctors told his family in early October he probably only had a month to live.
CREDIT: Courtesy Michelle Thompson Simard

Every year, 800 new children are diagnosed with neuroblastoma in the United States alone. It is tragic, and more research and resources are needed to continue fighting for a cure.

**More on Jacob’s journey here**