The Utah family is hit by tragedy as father and toddler daughter BOTH battle cancer

A Utah family faces the unimaginable just a few years after losing their three-year-old son to cancer: Now both father and their two-year-old daughter are battling cancer as well.

Nate Bowen, 41, and wife Allison had already gone through hell when their son Crosby died suddenly in 2018, just a month before his third birthday, after they later discovered it was a brain tumor.

But when their two-year-old daughter Annabelle was diagnosed with cancer last year, doctors began testing why this had happened to two toddlers in the same family, according to Today.

They soon discovered that Annabelle has a rare genetic condition called Li-Fraumeni syndrome, which can increase the risk of cancer.

When genetic testing revealed that Nate also had the condition, he began undergoing regular cancer screenings — and in September, doctors told him they’d found a tumor in his brain.

Nate Bowen, 41, and his two-year-old daughter Annabelle are both battling cancer at the same time

Nate and Allison Bowen also have an eight-year-old son named Dalton and a four-year-old daughter named Tessa

Nate and Allison Bowen also have an eight-year-old son named Dalton and a four-year-old daughter named Tessa

In 2018, they tragically lost their son Crosby just a month before his third birthday

In 2018, they tragically lost their son Crosby just a month before his third birthday

Bownes’ one-in-a-million story began in 2018, when their son Crosby – who they described as a “stupid kid” with a “big smile” – suddenly fell ill with fatigue and vomited.

Their GP thought it was just a virus, but Crosby got progressively worse over the course of a week.

Although they said none of his symptoms indicated he had a brain tumor, his condition worsened enough that they rushed him to the hospital.

“On the way to the hospital is probably when he had a massive heart attack or stroke or something and stopped breathing. We didn’t know,” Bowen said. “But we could see it’s deteriorating really fast.”

Doctors told the family that Crosby was brain dead, and they quickly took him off the ventilator.

“It was just really traumatic because it was so sudden,” Bowen said. “We were looked after fantastically and they engaged a child life specialist to help the children say goodbye to him.”

Crosby fell ill with fatigue and vomiting and died just a week after his symptoms started

Crosby fell ill with fatigue and vomiting and died just a week after his symptoms started

The Bowens later learned that their son had been murdered and that it was a brain tumor

The Bowens later learned that their son had been murdered and that it was a brain tumor

Last year, Annabelle had a bump on their leg and the Bowens learned that she too had cancer.  She underwent surgery and started chemotherapy

Last year, Annabelle had a bump on their leg and the Bowens learned that she too had cancer. She underwent surgery and started chemotherapy

Doctors performed genetic testing and found that Annabelle has a genetic condition that increased her chances of getting cancer

Doctors performed genetic testing and found that Annabelle has a genetic condition that increased her chances of getting cancer

They later learned through a CT scan that Crosby had a grade 4 glioblastoma, a “very aggressive brain tumor.”

After mourning for some time, Nate, Allison and their other children — Dalton, now 8, and Tessa, now 4 — welcomed a new addition to their family: Annabelle.

Annabelle ran into health problems in late 2020 when her parents noticed a bump on her leg.

In February 2021, she was also diagnosed with cancer and MRI found rhabdomyosarcoma, a soft tissue cancer of the muscles.

She quickly underwent surgery and chemotherapy, which she is completing this month.

But the doctors were curious as to why two of the Bowen children developed cancer and ran some genetic tests.

The whole family was tested and Nate found out he also had the condition, so he started regular screenings for various cancers

The whole family was tested and Nate found out he also had the condition, so he started regular screenings for various cancers

Last fall, doctors found a brain tumor and operated on to remove most of it.  However, due to an increased risk of more cancer, he does not receive chemotherapy

Last fall, doctors found a brain tumor and operated on to remove most of it. However, due to an increased risk of more cancer, he does not receive chemotherapy

“My daughter getting cancer led to my genetic testing, which led to cancer screening, and hopefully we could detect it early enough,” he said.

“If you have several young children who have cancer, there is usually a genetic mutation associated with it,” Nate said.

They discovered that Annabelle… Li-Fraumeni syndrome, a mutation in the TP53 gene. The TP53 typically prevents tumor growth, but the mutation does not.

While the mutation can happen spontaneously, it could also be genetic – so the rest of the family was tested.

Only Nate also had the condition, so he began undergoing regular cancer screenings. In September, for example, doctors found a large brain tumor, grade 2 astrocytoma, during an MRI.

Since then, he’s removed about 90 percent of the tumor, but while his daughter is undergoing chemo, he doesn’t, as it could cause him even more cancer.

“We really had to narrow our focus and say, ‘Okay, I can get through today’ or ‘I can get through this week,'” Nate said.

“I’ve really grown to see my wife in a different light and to have a real respect for the woman she is and how strong she is,” added Nate.

While Nate and Annabelle will likely always have to deal with the threat of cancer — and regular tests and screening — the family is doing its best to stay positive, in part by turning to their faith.

“We really had to narrow our focus and say, ‘Okay, I can get through today’ or ‘I can get through this week,'” Nate said.

In addition, he added: ‘My daughter who got cancer led to my genetic testing, which led to cancer screening, and allowed us to hopefully detect it early enough. It’s one of those bittersweet things out of which the bad comes. But there is a good part.’

He said his relationship with his wife has also grown stronger.

“I’ve really grown to see my wife in a different light and to have a real respect for the woman she is and how strong she is. Our love for each other has grown through the trials and we try to be as positive as possible.”

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