7-year-old celebrates a “No Mo Chemo Parade” at Johnson Elementary

LIMESTONE COUNTY Ala. -- Who wouldn't want to be the grand marshall of their own parade? A 7-year-old girl in Limestone county got to do that on Friday.

Pom poms and posters in hand, around 350 students lined up wearing their gold T-shirts, but that isn't their school color, it's the color of childhood cancer.

Addison Gatlin is a first grader at Johnson Elementary. She has had a very rare and aggressive brain cancer three times.

"You just see a child who is always happy and it's just heartbreaking," said Stephanie Music, Addison's teacher last year and the year before.

She was diagnosed at 2-years-old and has had three major surgeries.

"Each time they have had to remove a little bit of brain tissue. We just thank the good Lord that she comes through it every time," said Brenda Gatlin, Addison's grandmother.

After her last surgery, Addison had to go through radiation, then 48 weeks of chemo. She said it made her feel sick.

But this is a celebration. Her no more chemo parade, which she said made her feel happy.

"I was about in tears seeing everybody cheer. Our Johnson family is just wonderful. They have done more than you could ever imagine for this child. They support her in every way they can," said Brenda Gatlin.

Through it all, Addison rarely missed school, and always kept a smile on her face.

"She didn't let it get her down, and when you're having those kinds of days where you just think the world is kind of not a good place, you just look at this little girl who smiling in what all she's been through," said Music.

Addison said she has some big plans for her chemo-free life, watching plenty of cartoons. Her friends and family say no matter what comes in the future they will be there cheering her on. Addison finished what her family hopes was her last round of chemo on September 18th.

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