Pizzeria raises dough for boy battling cancer

Posted at 5:38 PM, Feb 03, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-04 00:07:54-05

LIBERTY TOWNSHIP, Ohio -- It's not every old weekend that the whole staff at LaRosa's begs to come to work.

Store manager Brian Sullivan and his staff knew Wednesday was special: the pizzeria is hosting a fundraiser for Kyler Bradley, a Fairfield Township boy battling the same rare form of pediatric brain cancer that claimed Lauren Hill's life.

The cancer has attacked Kyler's brain stems, weakening his nervous system and putting him in a wheelchair. His family pushed to get him home as soon as possible so that they can give him the best quality of life; he got a fire department and police escort back to his house last month.

Friends, neighbors and strangers have rallied around the 10-year-old, raising $100,000 online and more at events like the one at LaRosa's Liberty Township location.

"It just really hits home with me, because I have a 1-year-old at home and it makes me emotional," Sullivan said.

An army of #KylerStrong supporters -- that's the hashtag they've used on social media -- packed the pizzeria and gave Kyler a huge round of applause when he arrived with his family,

"It was amazing -- it was one of those things you just didn't expect," mom Rebecca Bradley said. 

At his school, Fairfield Intermediate, students and teachers sport "Kyler Strong" T-shirts. Missy Muller, assistant principal at Kyler's school, told the Journal-News that people have donated items like Pokemon cards because Kyler is a fan.

Rebecca Bradley said every little bit of financial support and encouragement helps.

"We struggle as it is, but I couldn't be where I am and Kyler I don't think would have the strength to be where he is without everybody behind us," she said.

The family continues to raise money through a GoFundMe account.