Former St. Jude patient trains for space launch

Published: Jul. 15, 2021 at 3:57 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - The countdown is on for a St. Jude employee and former patient whose been chosen to go on a SpaceX mission this year.

Hayley Arceneaux has been given a once in a lifetime opportunity.

“When they asked me to go to space immediately I said yes,” she said.

In just two months she’ll join a SpaceX crew on a the first all civilian mission to explore the cosmos. But it will not be the first time she has beat the odds.

At just 10 years old she survived bone cancer.

“I kept saying, ‘I don’t want to die, I don’t want to die,’ because at age 10 everyone I had known with cancer had passed away. We found St. Jude online and a few days later I was walking in the doors of St. Jude and immediately I felt hope.”

She’s spent her life pursuing medicine, and now works as a Physician’s Assistant at the very hospital that helped save her life.

“My family never received a bill. We’ll never even know how much my treatment costs,” Arceneaux said.

Now, she wants to spread that hope to other children and families fighting cancer. Her mission to space aims to do just that.

“Through our mission we’re aiming to raise 200-million-dollars for the hospital and to help kids all over the globe,” she said.

Her experience will hopefully help kids know that they shouldn’t be afraid to shoot for the stars.

“The training is pretty intense. They want to make sure we’re pretty well prepared to go to space,” said Arceneaux, “But, it’s been so fun. I feel like I’m getting all pf these once-in-a-lifetime experiences in one.”

To help St. Jude reach their fundraising goals, head to the Inspriation4′s site here: Those who pitch in with fundraising can win prizes and a chance to see the SpaceX launch in two months.

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