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      Fort Drum soldiers visit Oswego boy recovering from cancer

      Julian Ross

      Julian Ross isn't your average second grader. Like many kids his age he's fascinated with the military. However, unlike many kids, Julian has been battling stage 4 neuroblastoma for more than a year. This specific type is a common form of cancer in children.

      Julian's mom, Kristi Thompson said " we are hopeful. He went from terminal cancer four months ago to no evidence of the disease today."

      At his home in Oswego today, Julian got to meet his heroes. Troops came down from Fort Drum to surprise him. Walking through the rainy weather and into the front door, several members of the 10th mountain division from Fort Drum came in armed with presents. He was given an army hat which had his name on the back of it and a sweatshirt with Fort Drum in big yellow letters on the front. Most importantly Julian got the biggest Christmas present of them all. He was given the honorary title of sergeant. After the handshakes and all the salutes were finished, Julian was called by his proper name: Sergeant Ross.

      One of the men who was responsible for giving these gifts was Lt. Col. Patrick Kaune. "when you see a 2nd grader like Julian who epitomizes resiliency with all that he's been through, we really wanted to come down here and help him out and recognize him and let him know that we are all pulling for him."

      Although he wasn't jumping out of his chair with excitement, we can all give the little guy a break after going through all of this. State Senator Patty Ritchie arranged this early Christmas gift after learning of Julian's love of the military. One point she knows and one that we all should, is how important it is to make a child's day, especially one who deserves it like Julian. Even though Julian is too young to join the military right now, this 7-year-old could someday be the one defending our freedom.