James Ragan nominated to join board of Sunshine Kids
Published: Friday, February 15, 2013
Updated: Friday, February 15, 2013 12:02
James Ragan, a Duncan College sophomore, has been through enough pain to last a lifetime. As a child, he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a rare pediatric bone cancer, and chose to make the best out of the situation. He was recently nominated to the board of Sunshine Kids, an organization aimed at brightening the lives of pediatric cancer patients.
Ragan said that, with his sister Mecklin, he founded Triumph Over Kid Cancer, a foundation that aims to make a difference in the lives of children with pediatric bone cancer.
“Research is the only solution to that problem and we need the money to do it,” Ragan said. “I don't know if I will still be around when they find a cure, but I want to feel like I played an important part in it, whether I'm there at the end or not.”
Ragan said he was initially approached by Sunshine Kids as a teenager and has been heavily involved since. Over the years, according to Ragan, he served as a national SpokesKid to help get Sunshine Kids’ message out and raise money for the organization.
Ragan said his outlook on the future is grim but he hopes that as a board member he will be able to guide the organization to provide more and better services to children with cancer by both continuing old traditions as well as setting up new programs for young cancer patients.
“Well, you know our goal is to no longer exist because pediatric cancer no longer exists,” Ragan said. “Unfortunately, between 1975 and 2004, pediatric cancer rates increased by about a third, according to the National Cancer Institute. So unfortunately, [the future of Sunshine Kids] looks bright. But as long as there is a kid out there with pediatric cancer, we will do anything we can to make that kid's life a little more bearable.”
Will Rice College sophomore Max Katner said he believes Ragan’s involvement in Sunshine Kids will positively benefit the organization.
“I feel like this is an amazing opportunity for him to be part of a change that he can relate to; he can really make a difference this way,” Katner said.