Talan Keough has “the best little personality,” his grandmother, Judith Steele, says. He loves baseball and football and is a very knowledgeable 3 year old when it comes to both sports.
But when it comes to competition, the little boy, whose home is White Horse Beach, has certainly been given a challenge tougher than any middle linebacker.
He has leukemia.
Talan has been at Children’s Hospital in Boston since August 21 after doctor’s at South Shore Medical Center recommended he go up there. The pre-schooler had been suffering from stomach pains for weeks, which after numerous tests at both Jordan Hospital and South Shore Medical Center, led him to Boston and, on August 26, his diagnosis.
His mother, Nicole, has been by his side the whole time, even sleeping with him. She only leaves when family members make her leave to eat or bathe, said Steele. Talan’s dad spends weekends with them.
Her devotion, unfortunately, comes with a price. She’s taken a leave of absence from her job at Kingston Oil and while her boss said her job will be there for her, she’s not getting a paycheck. Meanwhile, Talan’s dad, Mike, is trying to “keep the ship afloat,” as Steele puts it, working in construction. An industry hit hard by the economic downturn of the past few years.
The family does have insurance, so Talan’s medical needs are taken care of. It’s the daily expenses of living that have become a problem. The ibills are coming in, but the family is struggling to meet them.
To help, friends and family of the Keough’s are holding a yard sale this weekend at the home of Talan’s uncle, Brendan Steele, at 5 Woodland Avenue. His house is already filling up with donations. According to Judith Steele, he said his cellar is already half full. “There’s going to be a lot of everything” she said. Even so, donations are still be accepted.
Talan’s prognosis is a good one, Steele said. His white blood cell count is already coming up, and when it reaches 500 and he can come home. The treatment plan last for two years, mostly on an outpatient basis.
The chemotherapy has already had one, expected, side effect. Talan is losing his blonde hair. But, his grandmother said, his dad and uncle plan on shaving their heads “so they can be cool like Talan.”
What: Multi-family benefit yard sale to benefit the family of Talan Keough
Where: 5 Woodland Avenue
When: September 24 and September 25 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Why: To help Talan’s family meet their expenses as he battles leukemia.
What else: Donations are still being accepted. Please bring them in by Friday afternoon.