Community comes together to support boy diagnosed with leukemia - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Community comes together to support boy diagnosed with leukemia

James Burchett was diagnosed with Leukemia six months ago. (Source: WALB) James Burchett was diagnosed with Leukemia six months ago. (Source: WALB)
Friends and family are now putting on a fundraiser for his cause. (Source: WALB) Friends and family are now putting on a fundraiser for his cause. (Source: WALB)
Mary Johnson and James Burchett (Source: WALB) Mary Johnson and James Burchett (Source: WALB)
Brinsey Valenzia (Source: WALB) Brinsey Valenzia (Source: WALB)
TIFTON, GA (WALB) -

The drive from Tifton to Atlanta is over three hours, and for one boy and his grandmother, it's a lifesaving drive.

Friends and family are now putting on a fundraiser for his cause. 

James Burchett is known to his friends and family as the "cancer killer." 

"He has good days and bad days," said Mary Johnson, James' grandmother.

James was diagnosed with leukemia six months ago. 

And the past six months have been filled with a lot of changes.

"I don't do as much as I use to," explained James. "My appetite is down and I've lost a lot of weight."

"It's been really hard," said Johnson. "I've had to miss work, because when he's in the hospital, I'm right there with him."

His grandmother has raised him since he was 5, and the two are inseparable. 

Even the hours spent in the car bring them closer. 

"I drive, he sleeps," said Johnson.

James and his grandmother travel to Atlanta for his chemo treatments and now, he is more familiar with a doctor's office than his own home.

"It's hard not knowing how many days he's going to be gone," said James' cousin, Brinsey Valenzia.

But James' life-loving spirit has not given up hope. 

"It's been a long six months," explained James. "And just three more years to go."

Now, James has the helping hand of the community.

An auction and yard sale has been planned to help pay for travel expenses and medical costs. 

"Its amazing really. I'm not one to ask for help," said Johnson. "I don't care how hard times get. But it's really been nice."

His family said that things like Saturday's event keep them going and in good spirits. 

"I see what he goes through and that keeps me positive," explained Johnson. "If he can do it, I can do it."

"We're so thankful for them all helping," said Valenzia. "I mean there's bad people in this world but there's also great people."

The yard sale and auction event for James will be held on Saturday at Le Carousel in Tifton.

The yard sale will start at 8 a.m. and the auction will be held at 3 p.m. 

Donations for the auction can be dropped off at Le Carousel which is located at 3416 Highway 41 South in Tifton.

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