Year In Review: Nathan Norman - WSET.com - ABC13

Year In Review: Nathan Norman

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Lynchburg, VA - A little boy in Rustburg's fight against cancer captured our hearts and headlines in 2012. 

Nathan Norman's family got some bad news in September that for the third time his cancer had progressed.

The 5-year-old asked his parents to put up the Christmas tree in September to help him feel better.  His story went crazy on the Internet and the message moved so many of you while giving a face to childhood cancer.

"I don't think I've ever had Christmas cards in my whole life," Nathan Norman said back in September.

But when Norman asked to celebrate Christmas early, the Christmas cards full of well wishes started.

His father Bobby Norman thought everyone would think they were crazy. 

"It was surprising because it was like, 'How do they know? How did they find out?' It makes you wonder," Bobby Norman said. "But it has been inspiring and uplifting to know people are rallying around your son."

After our story, the national media got wind of Norman's fight. Letters, packages and even visitors from all over started to show up at the Norman's door. 

Brooklyn EMT Joseph Scarpantio organized nearly a dozen first responders to make the trip.

"As soon as I started to say what I was doing all of my partners at work said, 'Scarp, count me in.  Say no more.  If you are going down there to Virginia say no more we are going with you to Virginia'," Scarpantio said.

Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell even invited Norman to Richmond to help light the Capitol Tree.

Thanks to generous donations, the Norman family was able to make thousands of Christmas bags for children fighting cancer. 

Liberty Christian Academy alone donated hundreds. Nathan's mom Dawn Norman couldn't believe the support they got.

"To come in and see the stage full (of Christmas bags) was just amazing," Dawn Norman said.

As 2012 ends, Norman is going through chemo again and his tumors have stabilized -- maybe thanks to his Christmas spirit -- so don't expect the decorations to be packed up anytime soon.

"If he asks us to leave it up all year we may leave it up all year," Bobby Norman said. "Because I mean in all honesty every day should be like Christmas."

Nathan Norman is going to be there for President Obama's inauguration; he was just invited by the Secret Service.

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