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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Life changed for 6-year-old Leo Zambori and his family on April 4, 2016.

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The first grader talks about how it all began.

“Well, my arm was hurting. When my nana picked me up from school, I would tell her my arm was hurting,” Leo said.

The Zambori’s are from Martins Ferry, Ohio. Initially, they took Leo to their local hospital. His mother, Natalie, said they were told to get him to Children’s Hospital immediately for blood transfusions.

“It is kind of all whirlwind from there. They retested everything and around 3 a.m. an oncology fellow came in and told us there were abnormal cells and told us it could be cancer,” Natalie said.

It was cancer, specifically leukemia.

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“When you are told that news, it’s like your world stops and you don’t know what to do next,” Natalie said.

Leo is undergoing a 3 ½-year treatment plan which includes a daily chemo pill and other forms of the drug.
His oncologist, Dr. Jean Tersak says Leo is full of life and just smiling his way through it all.

“Leo’s prognosis is excellent and a cure for childhood cancer in particular has gone up by 50 to 70, so something that was 20 percent curable in the 1950s is now 90 percent curable,” Dr. Tersak said.

At the end of chemo, Leo gets to ring the bell. That happens June 9, 2019.

You can help Leo and other children just like him this Thursday by donating during the 64th annual Children’s Hospital Free Care Fund Benefit Show on KDKA-TV.

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All proceeds benefit the children whose families cannot afford medical care.