Olivia Mason was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) in February of 2011 and was in the hospital for 6 months with 5 rounds of chemotherapy. She lost 30% of her body weight and had infections every round of chemo causing partial paralysis from leukemic tumours on her spinal cord, which affected her ability to walk. It was no small task for Olivia and her doctors to fend off her illness. Through the help of Dr. Jason Berman (now a LLSC funded researcher) and his team at the IWK Health Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Olivia’s treatment was successful. With renewed health and outlook on life Olivia and her family were able to move past her illness but maintain their connection to the blood cancer community.
Participating and donating to the Light The Walk and the LLSC each year, Olivia and her family work to give back and help others dealing with blood cancer the way she was helped. Olivia is currently in her first year at Seton Hall University in New Jersey studying as a political science major with a minor in accounting. Olivia is still very active still playing rugby and riding (horses) as she has always loved doing. This is the first year she’s been away from home but she’ll be returning in December to spend with family and friends. Her parents (Barry & Tammy Mason) have promised to have all of the Christmas decorations up for her when she comes home. As part of their continued support for the LLSC and the blood cancer community, Pressé Mason Barristers & Solicitors have agreed to provide a $5,000 matching donation for the LLSC’s holiday campaign this year. Olivia, Barry and the rest of her family are forever grateful for those who chose to support the blood cancer community. “It really makes a huge difference to patients and their families across the country.”