Cancer is a terrible disease. So many families throughout the world will be touched by this insidious illness, and while some who are diagnosed will fight and survive, others will not be so lucky.

There are cures for certain types of cancers, but beating the disease is a struggle. In order to keep fighting, cancer patients rely on the support of their family and friends, and even then it can be tough to remember that they aren’t fighting this battle all alone.

When Mackenna Newman’s mother was diagnosed with thyroid cancer, Mackenna and her father were ready, willing, and able to provide the best support possible to help get her well. Mackenna snapped a photograph during her mother’s treatment and it said so much more about fighting cancer than words ever could…

 It is estimated that 1,688,780 people will be diagnosed with some form of cancer in the year 2017. Of those diagnosed, it is estimated that 600,920 people will die because of cancer. Those numbers are almost too staggering for the human brain to process.  


Behind those numbers are countless families being impacted by the disease. Mackenna Newman, 17, comes from one of those families. Her mother was diagnosed with thyroid cancer and is currently undergoing treatment to battle the illness.cancerTwitter

Mackenna’s mother and father are devoted to each other. Her father has been an incredible support to his wife while she undergoes treatments. However, sometimes the treatments for her illness require isolation and he can’t sit by and hold her hand.cancerImgur

It might seem cruel to isolate a person going through chemotherapy. Sometimes, the loving touch of a family member might be something they want very much. However, the truth is that patients going through chemo are often put in isolation to keep them from getting infections.cancerLabroots

Mackenna’s dad was not going to be separated from his wife. Mackenna saw him sitting like this outside his door and took a photo which she shared online. She said “My mom has to stay in her room in isolation for her cancer radiation so my dad set up a desk at her door to keep her company and I’m crying.”


The deeply personal image of a family coping with cancer resonated with people all over the world. The photo very quickly went viral, and soon Mackenna was on the receiving end of mountains of positive support from total strangers.

The image Mackenna shared didn’t just touch people who felt badly for her mother and father, it struck a chord with other families who were also grappling with cancer. Seeing her dad’s devotion to her mother brought everyone so much hope.cancerTwitter

The messages that flooded Mackenna’s inbox weren’t all doom and gloom, either. She also heard from cancer survivors, including Carrie Denny, a nurse who had survived the same type of cancer that Mackenna’s mom is currently fighting who shared her own message of hope.  


Mackenna also heard from Robert H. Gras, a man whose own wife is currently undergoing treatments in her battle against cancer. He shared that he too was sitting as close to his wife as he could manage. It’s enough to bring tears to your eyes!cancerTwitter

In the battle against cancer, the best support people have is the support they get from others. Mackenna’s touching glimpse into one family’s struggle against the illness really put a face on a situation so many are grappling with.

Share this touching moment with your friends below!