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Family Fun Night in Shaler benefits boy's fight against cancer

| Wednesday, April 17, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Submitted | Pine Creek Journal
Cameron Howat, 1, in the of fall 2012 when he visited Hartwood Acres, before physicians diagnosed his cancer in late December and he became reliant on an oxygen tube.

Businesses quickly responded when waitress Brandy Linke came knocking for donations to Family Fun Night at Rocky's Route 8 in Shaler.

Area merchants and eateries turned over toys and gift cards for giveaway at the fundraiser set for 5 to 10 p.m. Saturday, April 20, at the restaurant and bar.

Proceeds will benefit cancer fighter Cameron Howat, 13 months, son of Angela and Ross Howat of Adams Township, both Hampton High School graduates.

“They're just wonderful people,” said Linke, also a Hampton High School graduate, mother of two toddlers, and friend of Cameron's family.

Four months ago, the Howats took Cameron to Children's Hospital because he was experiencing breathing problems. Diagnosed with bronchitis and pneumonia, Cameron got a breathing tube on Christmas Eve.

Physicians then found and removed a cancerous mass on his spine. Cameron continues to receive chemotherapy for his rare spinal cancer.

“He just keeps smiling,” said Linke, 28, of Hampton.

Angela Howat, 23, is a 2008 graduate of Hampton High School. Ross Howat, 24, is a 2007 Hampton High School graduate.

Cameron is the couple's only child.

“He's eating well ... He's playing. He's active. He's cranky, here and there, but he's doing well,” said Cameron's mother, the former Angela Ashton, daughter of Dave and Shari Ashton of Hampton.

“He was on oxygen ... We've been able to wean him from that,” said Angela Howat. “His left arm is getting stronger.”

Cameron receives chemotherapy as an orally administered solution. His parents pick up the pre-filled syringes of medicine at a Children's Hospital pharmacy.

Each month, Cameron receives the medicine for five days in a row.

“It's not easy, but we get it in,” said Cameron's mom, grateful for the prayers and support of loved ones.

“We're doing one day a time, and staying positive. That's all you can do,” she said.

The Howats worship at Allison Park Church in Hampton, and remain close to the pastor of Hampton Presbyterian Church.

They plan to “make an appearance” with Cameron at Family Fun Night, Angela said.

Tickets to the fundraiser will be available at the door. Admission — $20 for adults, $10 for children, and free for children age 5 and younger — includes a buffet dinner, beer, wine, bingo games, a Chinese auction, prize giveaways and children's activities.

Rocky's Route 8 is at 602 Willruth Drive, Shaler. For information, call 412-487-6259.

Deborah Deasy is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6369 or ddeasy@tribweb.com.

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