The family of terminal cancer patient Brody Allen say they have found a whole new family thanks to the generosity and love of the Tri-State. Sunday afternoon, more than 1,000 people traveled to Colerain Township to either be in or watch the Christmas-themed parade held in the 2-year-old's honor.
Some parade participants showed up at Northgate Mall as early as 2 p.m. Sunday, two hours before the scheduled start. They were busy decorating motorcycles and clown cars in an attempt to make the child, who has tumors on his brain and spine, smile. He isn't expected to live to see Christmas.
Parade organizers say 60 entries signed up but many more than that showed up. Brody was right in front as the parade's Grand Marshal.
After the 2-year old finished his duties, he got off the truck he was riding in and watched the parade. Todd Allen, Brody's father, said his son said "Wow," and clapped.
All along Springdale Road people were dressed up in Christmas attire and carried "Team Brody" signs. Yvonne Davis knew she had to come. "Just the thought of that little one having cancer and might not even get to see Christmas. Seven years ago I had breast cancer and I just can't imagine what he's going through."
Missy Mumfrey was just down the street. "You know this is awesome because it's bringing the city together, all for a 2-year old," she says. "This is amazing. It's God's grace."
Seven-year-old Alan Fuller made a sign for Brody and told WVXU, "He's very nice. He's my friend and he always will be and he's the best!"
Todd Allen says now that the parade is over, the family will be scaling back Brody's activities. The family will privately celebrate Christmas Eve on Monday and Christmas on Tuesday, WVXU news partner WCPO reports.
Brody's story gained national attention after the Allen family set up a Facebook page asking for donations of Christmas decorations. Soon, the whole town had joined in the family's effort to celebrate Christmas early. Neighbors not only donated decorations to the Allens, but decked their own homes and lawns.