#InspiredbyWes: York County boy’s spirit lives on after he loses battle to cancer

Posted at 10:53 PM, Nov 05, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-05 23:22:47-05

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Wes Pak, a 12-year-old boy who was fighting Neuroblastoma since 2011, has died.

His family shared a post on Wes' Facebook page chronicling his battle with cancer he died Saturday, but his family and friends are making sure his legacy lives on.

"We can't change anything, but we can walk beside them on the journey and make sure it's as least difficult as possible and they know they are surrounded by love," said Kristy Spurgeon.

In Robertson Hall at Regent University, four red boxes line the hall. They are donation boxes to collect toys for children fighting cancer.  Spurgeon, a family friend of the Pak family, said this is what Wes would have wanted.

A law student at Regent, she wanted to make sure the campus was helping in any way they can.

"Wes wanted the toy drive to continue. He's been doing this eight years. He's 12 years old," said Spurgeon.

Wes was diagnosed with Neuroblastoma, a rare cancer affecting children, in 2011. Those who knew him said despite what he was going through, he was a light in everyone's lives. In September, the Yorktown community showed up to support Wes and his family during halftime at a football game.

"He left this trail every day. His smile was infectious. Our community rallied behind Wes and his family," said Spurgeon.

The donation boxes will be at Regent University until December 4.

"We jumped all over it. The whole point of this school is to be Christian leaders to change the world, and I don't know anything more inspiring than putting yourself aside to help others," said Wes Jones, a member of student government.

Each box has information about the toy drive, as well as information about Wes and why he started the drive. Spurgeon said she can just see Wes standing next to each box with his smile.

During this difficult time, Spurgeon is helping with coordinating meal plans and grocery deliveries for the family. They also have a donation page to help the family with Wes' funeral expenses.

"The legacy he left behind in the 12 short years of his life - many human beings can't even accomplish that in a full life," said Spurgeon.