Boy undergoing treatment for leukemia gets back brace transformed into Jose Altuve jersey

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Boy undergoing treatment for leukemia gets back brace transformed, Deborah Wrigley has more on this heartwarming story. (KTRK)

Lane Rex, 6, has been going through leukemia treatment for the past two years -- a third of his young life.

Three weeks ago, he fractured a vertebrae and was given a large back brace made of hard white plastic. As much pain as he was in, he didn't want to wear it.

"I thought it was not cool, and people would make fun of me," he said.

His mother and his doctor gave him no choice, and he wore it to school for two days.

Lane's joy in life is playing baseball with his little league. He is still going through treatment, taking at least one chemotherapy pill each day.

"I feel a lot better now than before," he said. "They thought I might die at first."

The back injury meant he couldn't catch, or play as he had before.

"It changed me," he said. "I can still hit and run to first base. But then they put in a pinch runner. I can't slide either. "

"I was concerned that might break his spirit," said his mother, Kim Rex.

His 9-year-old brother, Landon, said he would take care of any hecklers.

"I told him when school started that if anybody picks on you, I'm coming," Landon said.

Asked if he's had to step in, he replied, "Nope."

Kim wondered if a makeover for the back brace might help. She knew of a digital printing company that specializes in vinyl wraps.

"I thought I'd walk in, and they'd tell me they would do it. They also told me I couldn't pay them any dime and they could have it ASAP."

ADDI Printing has done a lot for the community. This was a small job, but unlike what they usually do, with car wraps and large banner signs.

Mother and son paid ADDI a visit.

"I couldn't believe this boy was sick," said co-owner Gareth Blackett. "He's got such a great spirit, he loves baseball, the Astros are his favorite team. I asked, 'who's your favorite player,' and he said 'Jose Altuve'. Who wouldn't?"

The brace was quickly transformed into a version of Altuve's jersey.

"People think it is cool," said Lane.

His mother said ADDI's co-owners did something priceless for her son.

Lane is proudly wearing the brace to his games. His best friend, Jackson, gave it a thumbs up.

It's a bright spot in a little boy's life, who smiles and laughs even as he continues with cancer treatment. The good news is that the treatments may be over by December, when his mother says doctors expect Lane to be able to ring the bell, symbolizing that the treatment has beaten the leukemia.

When Lane was asked if he might want to use his bat to ring the bell, he laughed and giggled, just like a 6-year-old boy with dreams for the future -- which might include getting his favorite player's autograph.
Related Topics:
societyHouston AstrosleukemiahealthHouston
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