Kingsport boy taking on Wilms Tumor, now in Memphis for 6-month treatment


KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL/ABC-Tri Cities) – An eight-year-old Tri-Cities boy who was diagnosed with Wilms Tumor cancer is now receiving treatment at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, in Memphis.

Wilms Tumor is the most common kidney cancer among children.

Kw’Shawn Watterson and his mother spoke to Pheben Kassahun, via Skype about the diagnosis and the much-needed support from the community.

“It’s very hard. It really is, but he only has me so, we do what we can,” Kw’Shawn’s mother, Destiny Fields said.

The single Kingsport mother of two is helping her son face a big challenge. One night over dinner, Kw’Shawn felt a sharp pain in his abdomen.

“Everybody thought it was just me needing to go to the bathroom,” Kw’Shawn explained.

However, as the pain began to dwell, his mother rushed him to the hospital.

“They just thought it was pneumonia then later on, we found out that it was actually part of the tumor had burst and went to his lungs,” Fields said.

In February 2018, Kw’Shawn underwent surgery to remove a kidney. The cancer was in remission, until it returned in March 2019. 

Because of the size of the tumor, doctors ruled Kw’Shawn’s it as an automatic stage four.

“A doctor basically just walked in and said this is what’s happening. You are getting med-flown to memphis, and that’s kind of how we got here,” Fields explained.

Kw’Shawn is expected to be at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital until the start of the new school year.

“A lot of people don’t think it’s going to hit you until it really hits you,” Fields said.

With prayers and the support from community members, they are able to push through.

“Dobyns-Bennet High School; this is the second time they actually sent us a box of goodies,” Fields said. “A book of the players, and they actually wrote cute notes in there.”

One thing is for sure, is that her faith has grown since this journey began.

Fields said, “You got to keep faith and you got to keep strong and you can’t let your child see you down because they get their strength from you.”

She said Kw’Shawn’s high spirit and sense of humor continues to push her as she remains by his side.

Destiny: “He dresses up as the flash.”
Kw’Shawn: “This!”
Destiny: *laughter* “As you can see.”

His trusty side-kick, also known as his 3-year-old sister is considered “girl flash”.

“She does really great with him. To only be three, I mean she sits at the doctor’s office for hours while he does chemo, holds his hand, kisses his head, makes sure he doesn’t need anything,” fields said.

They hope to complete the six-month treatment, and for him to start the third grade with his friends.

If you would like to follow Kw’Shawn’s journey on Facebook: KwShawnStrong.

If you are able to help his family with medical expenses, you can donate via GoFundMe

Wilms Tumor is a childhood cancer that begins in the kidney. Parents often find a firm lump on the child’s abdomen.

Common symptoms are nausea, stomach pain, high blood pressure and blood in pee.

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