At only 3 years old, Reid Gleeson is undergoing proton beam therapy treatment at the Mayo Clinic for a type of brain tumor called medulloblastoma. Reid was diagnosed at age 2, and though his doctors initially believed the cancer was in remission, his parents found out that the cancer had returned.
When he's taking a break from his treatments, Reid loves to talk all things trash. He enjoys watching garbage truck videos on YouTube and can even name the different types of trucks.
So, for his third birthday, it wasn’t really a surprise that Reid had a garbage-themed party. And recently, the staff at the Mayo Clinic gave Reid an insider look into the world of waste.
Mayo Clinic's In the Loop has more:
When it comes to birthday party themes, the preschool set tends to gravitate toward princesses and superheroes. But not Reid Gleeson. "For his third birthday we had a garbage party," Reid's mom, Megan Gleeson, says. "He loves all things garbage." Megan tells us Reid watches garbage truck videos on YouTube and can name the different types of trucks he sees. He has his own garbage can, a gift from neighbors. And every Monday — garbage day at the Gleeson's Davenport, Iowa, home — you can count on Reid peeking out the window as the garbage truck makes its way down the street.
That routine was interrupted when Reid began proton beam therapy treatment for medulloblastoma, a type of brain tumor. He was diagnosed when he was just 2 and received high-dose chemotherapy at the University of Iowa. Doctors believed the cancer was in remission. But in June, the Gleesons learned the cancer had returned. They immediately headed for Mayo Clinic's Rochester campus.
"We didn't even have an appointment," Megan says. "Mayo went above and beyond to get Reid started with treatment quickly." And that treatment quickly made a difference for Reid. "When we arrived, he could hardly walk," Megan says. "He'd tell me, 'Mommy, I want to be done falling down.'" That changed within days of Reid's first dose of proton beam therapy. "He's had a huge response to treatment," Megan says. "He's gotten his independence back. He's running, jumping and playing again."