Rebecca Bradley (center) testifies in support of legislation helping to raise awareness for DIPG research. She is joined by her oldest son, Kirk Bradley, and Carolyn Coley, wife of Senator Bill Coley.

COLUMBUS - On Wednesday, State Senator Bill Coley (R-Liberty Township) welcomed Rebecca Bradley, mother of the late Kyler Bradley, to the Ohio Statehouse to testify before members of the Senate's Transportation, Commerce and Labor Committee. Bradley delivered testimony in support of legislation that would help raise awareness and provide contributions for clinical research aimed at curing deadly pediatric brain tumors.

Sponsored by Senator Coley, the bill would establish a KylerStrong Foundation specialty license plate, with 100 percent of the proceeds supporting DIPG research through the foundation.

DIPG is an aggressive, malignant brain tumor found at the base of the brain stem, affecting approximately 200 to 400 children in the U.S each year. It is the second most common malignant brain tumor and is the leading cause of childhood death due to brain tumors. The average prognosis of those diagnosed is 9 months. Symptoms include double vision, inability to close the eyelids completely, drooping of one side of the face as well as difficulty chewing and swallowing.

Kyler Bradley passed away on April 12, 2016. The day after his passing, Senator Coley paid tribute to Bradley with a moment of silence on the floor of the Senate, urging his colleagues to redouble their efforts to find a cure for DIPG.

"Today is another milestone in our efforts to honor Kyler and all those we've lost too soon to DIPG," said Coley. "This simple measure offers hope for families that one day we can overcome this disease and the heartbreak it causes."

Senator Coley and his wife, Carolyn, witnessed the devastation caused by DIPG firsthand as they developed a close friendship with constituent Kyler Bradley and his family during the 10-year-old's battle with the disease at Cincinnati Children's Hospital in 2015.

"My heart is not yet at peace," said Bradley. "My Kyler may not have gotten his miracle, but I get out of bed each morning to honor his legacy and put another foot forward to help end the suffering caused by this disease." 

Bradley and her oldest son, Kirk, remained in the hearing room to witness the unanimous approval of the legislation, moving the bill one step closer to becoming law in Ohio.

Earlier this year, Senator Coley co-sponsored legislation, introduced by Senator Stephanie Kunze (R-Hilliard), designating May 17th as Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG) Awareness Day.

Senate Bill 77 now goes to the Senate's Rules and Reference Committee for further consideration. 

For more information about the KylerStrong DIPG Awareness specialty license plate and research efforts supported by the KylerStrong Foundation, please visit www.kylerstrongfoundation.com.

 
 
 
  
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