Pediatric Cancer

Family Relying on Crowdsourcing While 5-Year-Old Daughter Battles Leukemia

Due to COVID-19 protocols, the girl's siblings have not been able to see her in weeks since only their parents are allowed to visit

An undated image of 5-year-old Veronica Strub, a cancer patient originally from El Cajon who now lives in Phoenix.
Strub Family

A family of six who moved from El Cajon to Phoenix just before the coronavirus pandemic hit are relying on funds generously donated to their GoFundMe as they tend to their 5-year-old, who was recently diagnosed with cancer.

Veronica Strub was diagnosed with leukemia last month and has since spent her days at Phoenix Children’s Hospital while she battles the illness. Due to COVID-19 protocols, her parents are the only ones who are able to visit her, and they do so regularly.

“We’ve been here three weeks now,” Gary Strub, the girl’s father, told 12 News in Phoenix.

Day after day, Gary and his wife, Kimberly Strub, visit their daughter as she undergoes chemotherapy at the hospital. They said her diagnosis has been devastating.

“The whole world was dark,” Gary said. “That’s my daughter.”

“Seeing your 5-year-old have a stroke -- it’s really difficult,” Kimberly said.

The parents say the strict visitor limitation has been difficult on Veronica’s siblings, especially her twin sister.

“She misses her dearly,” Gary said. “She wants to talk to her all the time. They have never been apart for this long.”

The Strub family headed east from San Diego County in hopes of starting a massage and esthetician business. Due to the pandemic, however, that didn’t work out.

“COVID hit and I had to stop working then,” Kimberly said.

They took a hit financially and are still recovering, but the devoted parents don’t want to leave Veronica’s side.

“I need to be there for her, and her dad needs to be there for her,” Kimberly said. “And we can’t do that if we’re not there physically.”

They said Veronica’s treatment will take about two years of chemotherapy and frequent hospital visits.

“This is a tough road, but we’re going to be there for her as much as we can,” Kimberly said.

This story was originally reported by 12 News in Phoenix.

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