ETCETERA - 10-year-old Walla Walla boy continues treatment for cancer

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Ten-year-old Devin Bailey continues to receive chemotherapy and steroid treatment at a Spokane hospital. He's lost his hair, again, and misses being in school and spending time with friends, said his grandmother, Nana Phyllis Bishop.

The son of Lisa Donaldson, Devin was diagnosed with Down syndrome before birth. In fall 2007 he was diagnosed with childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia, a fast-growing killer of white blood cells, the body's weapon to fight infection.

He was in treatment until December 2010, when doctors declared he was free of cancer and removed an implanted medicine port from his chest.

Then in early 2011, because of an eye problem, Devin saw a specialist in Spokane who said the cancer had returned and was growing in the iris of his right eye.

He's receiving a two-year course of intensive chemotherapy and 14 radiation treatments at Spokane's Sacred Heart Medical Center. But a bacterial infection will prevent Devin from being home in time to celebrate Christmas Day with family.

"It's been hard on all of us. We thought he was going to be cancer-free," Nana Phyllis said in a June 9 U-B interview by colleague Sheila Hagar.

In between treatments, Devin visited his Nana, while she recovered from hip replacement surgery at Park Manor Rehabilitation Center. She was well enough to go home on Dec. 15.

"I pray every night for the Lord to heal Devin of cancer," Phyllis wrote. She and Devin ask everyone to keep them in their prayers.

She said they're grateful to the people of Walla Walla, Milton-Freewater and elsewhere for their generous donations, including in donation containers at local businesses and to the account at Baker Boyer Bank.

"This Christmas have love and Christmas sharing and keep Jesus in your heart," Phyllis said.

Head on over to union-bulletin.com/ and check out a great blog of vintage photos that's visible on the home page.

Click on Bygone Walla Walla under blogs and you'll discover a plethora of images taken years ago in the city and county, collected by retired librarian Joe Drazan.

He posts new photos almost every day, the latest being views of Pioneer Park. His blog has been available at the U-B website since Oct. 16.

It functions as a daily "Remember When" feature, and also yields more incoming material for Bob's massive accumulation.

Bob's been assisting the Camp Fire USA Walla Walla office by digitalizing its photo collection and discovered the office needs access to an 8mm projector to play two Camp Kiwanis films from the 1950s. They would like to have them digitized if the quality merits.

More than 700 photos and slides from their archive have been processed so far. Anyone with a lead on an 8mm projector may contact Camp Fire, 414 S. Park St., at 525-3180.

Cadet Private First Class Brandon Latendresse, a Walla Walla High School sophomore, received an immediate promotion by scoring highest in the Wa-Hi Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps Blue Devils Cadet Battalion Cadet of the Month competition for November.

Now 16, Brandon made this new rank after winning the top spot with a score of 78 points.

The top cadet was selected from three candidates who were inspected and examined in oral interviews by a board of four advanced cadets, said Lt. Col. Bill Bialozor, senior army instructor for Wa-Hi's JROTC program.

Cadet Pvt. Dylan Mayeski was first runner up and Cadet Pvt. Mattie Bialozor was second runner up. Dylan is a 16-year-old sophomore; Mattie, 14, is a freshman.

Brandon joined JROTC because he plans to join the U.S. Marine Corps and attend college. He enjoys playing sports and video games, shooting and fishing.

"His strongest competitive category was his self confidence," said Cadet Command Sgt. Maj. Malachi Matthews. "This Cadet of the Month was a close match and the cadets' performances were outstanding."

Wa-Hi JROTC cadets develop leadership skills and strive to be better citizens in society, according to a release in the Walla Walla Public Schools Week in Review.

Many cadets compete on the drill, marksmanship and physical training teams and attend the class. These cadets compete in drill meets at 16 other schools in the Cascade Division that include Army, Air Force, Marine Corps and Navy cadet programs.

Members of Blue Mountain Pheasants Forever Chapter 258 are in a clean up mode. On Dec. 2 a crew from the non-profit conservation group did a trash pickup on a "feel free to hunt" area, the third one in the last two months, said Jim Sonne, president. The first time, they cleared out 97 tires from Byrnes Road out of Touchet.

The second one was on Evans Road in Walla Walla. Debris included targets, clay pigeons, beer cans and about 100 empty shells. It was posted with a sign that said "no target shooting."

The third was on Radar Road, where they gathered 10 tires, cans, clay pigeons, targets and assorted trash.

This year three areas have been closed to hunting, "and if this continues we won't have any left in this area," Jim said.

Those who see person(s) dumping trash or target shooting are urged to get a license number and call the Sheriff's office at 527-3265.

Jim is also offering his group to pick up the trash for folks who can't by calling him at 525-3550 or email jimsonne@aol.com .

Etcetera appears in daily and Sunday editions. Annie Charnley Eveland can be reached at annieeveland@wwub.com or afternoons at 526-8313.

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