Fire Pushes Camp for Children With Cancer to California - 8 News NOW

Fire Pushes Camp for Children With Cancer to California

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LAS VEGAS -- The Carpenter 1 wildfire interrupted a summer camp that helps children with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses.

The children have been looking forward to summer camp all year long, but with the wildfire engulfing the Spring Mountains, the Nevada Childhood Cancer Foundation could not hold its 17th annual Camp Cartwheel at the Torino Ranch.

A Las Vegas lawyer stepped up, so the flames could not stop the fun.

Camp Cartwheel has been a summer tradition for 17 years, but this year, it's at the Kingston Ranch in Sandy Valley because of the wildfire.

"I can't say no to kids, especially these kids," Kingston Ranch owner and attorney Al Marquis said.

When Marquis learned the foundation needed a new place to host Camp Cartwheel with just a few day's notice, he knew he had to say yes.

"It's an eye opening experience, and it's incredible what these kids have gone through and what their families have gone through," Marquis said.

At 10 years old, Avery Driscoll is fighting pilocytic astrocytoma, a brain tumor.

"I just got done with chemo about two months ago, and so I have more energy and I'm feeling better," Avery said.

Avery said she's grateful the wildfire could not put an end to her plans.

"When I was at my house, there was so much ash in the sky," she said.

This is the first year Camp Cartwheel is in San Bernardino County, Calif. The Carpenter 1 fire might have torched part of Nevada, but canceling camp was never an option, foundation CEO Jeff Gordon said.

"We didn't even think for a moment that we would cancel Camp Cartwheel," Gordon said. "We just can't. It means too much to too many children."

Children such as 11-year-old Angel Sotelo, who is able to forget about his rare blood disorder while horseback riding.

"The owner, it was nice of him to lend it to us and let us just have fun and enjoy our camp," said Angel, who is waiting for a bone marrow transplant.

It also gives Marquis a chance to be a kid again, playing side by side with the most courageous children in all of Nevada.

"Once you go through that experience, you could never turn down a request again," Marquis said.

The only change this week is that the kids, ages 5 to 17, are being bused home in the evenings instead of staying overnight like they normally do at Torino Ranch, but all those fun activities continue this week for the young patients so they can enjoy this medically-supervised camp.

Their siblings also get to come along, too.

Camp Cartwheel is expected to return to Torino Ranch next year.

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