Benninghoff Measure Makes September ‘Childhood Cancer Awareness Month’ in PA
HARRISBURG – The state House in Harrisburg on Tuesday approved a resolution introduced by Rep. Kerry Benninghoff (R-Centre/Mifflin) officially designating September as “Childhood Cancer Awareness Month” in Pennsylvania.

“Part of the struggle against childhood cancer is raising awareness about this issue,” said Benninghoff, who serves as chairman of the bipartisan House Cancer Caucus. “Information can lead to early detection and treatment, which can save lives.”

Part of the reason the illness does not attract as much attention as some other high-profile diseases is due to the fact that childhood cancer makes up less than 1 percent of all cancers diagnosed each year.

“When your child is that one out of 100 children, it’s a frightening and sad realization,” said Benninghoff, whose 4-year-old daughter, Ryleigh, passed away on Dec. 31, 2010, after succumbing to brain cancer. “We are really making progress in treating children with cancer. Pennsylvanian hosts some premiere research and treatment facilities that are on the cutting edge on this issue.”

Childhood cancer is the second leading cause of death in children under the age of 15. The leading cause of death is accidents. Approximately 1,350 children are expected to die of cancer in 2014.

The American Cancer Society estimates approximately 10,450 children in the United States under the age of 15 will be diagnosed with cancer in 2014.

Pennsylvania is the home of six hospitals that are part of the Children’s Oncology Group and two of the 10 institutions in the Pediatric Brain Tumor Consortium.

“We want children with cancer to know that we’re thinking about them and support them in their struggle,” Benninghoff said. “We also want the parents, doctors and other caregivers to know we are behind them. My dream is that someday we will find a cure.”

Representative Kerry Benninghoff
171st District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Dan Massing
717.772.9845 /
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