Garrett, Diagnosed at 2, Brain Tumor

Garrett was a 2-year-old live wire when his right eye started to “wiggle,” as his mother, Tracye, describes it.

(2005) When you meet 7-year-old Garrett Clark, it’s a special treat.

Garrett, Diagnosed at 2, Brain TumorNot only do you get to meet a brave boy who has fought a brain tumor, but you also might have the opportunity to see his Elvis impersonation – but only if you’re lucky!

Tracye Clark describes her son as a “live wire” – full of energy, spunk and not the least bit shy.

“He’s your typical boy,” says Tracye. “He’s curious about everything and is just a tad mischievous.”

But Garrett’s life has been anything but typical.  When he was 2-years-old, he developed a “wiggle” in his right eye that was of concern to his mom.

Just to be safe, Tracye took Garrett to an ophthalmologist, who referred him to Texas Children’s. After a series of tests, he was diagnosed with a brain tumor. Two days later, while his family was still reeling from the impact of the diagnosis, Garrett had brain surgery and started treatment at Texas Children’s Cancer Center.

Now a happy, healthy preschooler, Garrett barely remembers his days in the hospital – but Texas Children’s made quite an impression on the family. Inspired by the center’s expert nursing care, Tracye is studying to become a pediatric oncology nurse. The family has become active in efforts to raise funds for pediatric brain tumor research for other volunteer organizations serving children with cancer, where they often meet other families facing the disease.

“Whenever we meet families with children who have cancer, I always tell them right away that Texas Children’s Cancer Center is the best place for kids,” Tracye says. “Why go anywhere else?”

When you meet 7-year-old Garrett Clark, it’s a special treat.

Not only do you get to meet a brave boy who has fought a brain tumor, but you also might have the opportunity to see his Elvis impersonation – but only if you’re lucky!

Tracye Clark describes her son as a “live wire” – full of energy, spunk and not the least bit shy.

“He’s your typical boy,” says Tracye. “He’s curious about everything and is just a tad mischievous.”

But Garrett’s life has been anything but typical.  When he was 2-years-old, he developed a “wiggle” in his right eye that was of concern to his mom.

Just to be safe, Tracye took Garrett to an ophthamologist, who referred him to Texas Children’s Hospital.  After a series of tests and the fear of the unknown, Garrett was diagnosed with a brain tumor.

Two days later, while the Clarks were still trying to comprehend the news, Garrett had surgery to remove the tumor and immediately began starting treatment at Texas Children’s Cancer Center.

Garrett, Diagnosed at 2, Brain Tumor

Now a happy, healthy 7-year-old, who might sing you a verse from “Ain’t Nothin’ But A Hound Dog,” barely remembers anything about being in the hospital and receiving chemotherapy.  But Texas Children’s has certainly made quite an impression on the Clark family.

Inspired by the Cancer Center’s expert nursing care, Tracye has been studying to become a pediatric oncology nurse for the last couple of years. The Clarks have become active in efforts to raise money for pediatric brain tumor research and other volunteer organizations serving children with cancer, including “The Sunshine Kids,” organized by  Astros’ 2nd baseman, Craig Biggio.

“Craig Biggio is my favorite player,” said Garrett.  “But he’d better watch out … one day I’m going to take his job!”

It’s only natural that Garrett would love baseball.  His middle name is ‘Ryan,’ after the legendary Astros’ pitcher, Nolan Ryan.

Wherever they are – at a Sunshine Kids event, at a baseball game or in the Cancer Center clinic,  the Clarks give other families facing a diagnosis of childhood cancer the gift of hope and reassure them that Texas Children’s Cancer Center is the best place to be.