Things are looking up for Jason Overman.
He will probably be released from the Primary Children's Hospital within the next few days. He is in good condition following June 13 surgery that removed two cancerous tumors. And fund-raisers have collected almost all the money needed for his mid-July bone-marrow transplant.The 5-year-old Orem boy suffers from neuroblastoma, a rare form of nerve cancer that leaves him only a 20 percent chance of survival. With a marrow transplant from his 16-year-old sister, Julie, his chances would increase to 50 percent.
"It looks like he will get his surgery," said Brent Wood, a fund-raiser and family friend of the Overmans. "The UCLA Medical Center needs $130,000 before it will admit Jason, and I think we have a little over that." The center said the final cost would probably be around $150,000 for Jason and $5,000 to remove the needed marrow from Julie.
Several high schools donated their senior class project funds, and schools have organized benefit dances and carnivals. Area merchants donated items for a parking lot sale and auction. And private citizens sent checks or put money in collection cans placed at many restaurants and convenience stores.
Wood said a "pour-a-thon" sponsored by Geneva Rock last Saturday raised about $30,000. For each yard of concrete poured, $25 was donated to the Jason Overman cancer fund. The last fund-raiser currently scheduled is a June 24 steak fry at the Provo Elk's Lodge. Entertainment will be furnished by an Elvis Presley impersonator.