‘Leave it in God’s hands’: Two-year-old girl sees love of community while battling leukemia

Weekday broadcast of WYMT Mountain News at 6
Published: Nov. 17, 2023 at 6:55 PM EST
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STOPOVER, Ky. (WYMT) - Luna McClanahan is on the journey of her life, dealing with an unexpected diagnosis before even celebrating her third birthday.

The Phelps girl was diagnosed with mixed phenotype acute leukemia in October, with a rare mixture of acute myeloid leukemia and acute lymphocytic leukemia. Her parents, Kenneth McClanahan and Kayla Martin, said the news shook their world.

“Luna was a normal child, as far as everything goes, health-wise. You know: wide open, ready to play at any point in time. She went for about three days where she was kind of borderline bedridden; she didn’t want to get up and move around,” said McClanahan.

Shortly after seeking treatment for what they believed was an ear infection, doctors shared the cancer diagnosis.

“There’s nothing, as a mother, I can do besides love her and be there and spend all the time I need to spend with her every day,” said Martin.

“And leave it in God’s hands,” McClanahan added.

The family spent the last month in the hospital, hours from home, as Luna went through chemotherapy. During that time, the community they call home was preparing to welcome them back in style.

“I thought I was gonna lose it, because they had fire trucks waiting on us. And it was probably one of the best feelings I’ve ever felt, just to be able to see just people standing out there welcoming my baby home,” Martin said.

Neighbors lined the roadway with signs, sharing their love for Luna, hoping to stand behind the family in their time of need.

“Like, I really have hope for humanity now,” said Martin. “Knowing that people that don’t even know my child- has never laid eyes on my child- and they’re standing in her corner.”

Those same neighbors have arranged a fall festival for Luna, hoping to bring in more funds to offset the medical expenses.

The event, which includes free and “pay what you can” entertainment, is all about spending time with the ones you love.

“Come out and enjoy yourself. Spend time with your kids while you can. You know, we’re never guaranteed tomorrow,” said McClanahan.

The event will take place at the Kimper Fire Department from 1 p.m. until 6 p.m. You can follow Luna’s Journey on Facebook.