Bakersfield Fire Department’s birthday surprise for young boy battling brain tumor


It was a sweet birthday surprise for a local little boy battling an aggressive brain tumor.

All Damon Cruz wanted for his birthday was to meet a firefighter and the Bakersfield Fire Department went above and beyond to grant the wish.

Fire Chief Anthony Galagaza and members of the Bakersfield Fire Department stopped by Damon’s 4th birthday party to wish him a Happy Birthday.

Two years ago, Damon was diagnosed with Medulloblastoma Grade 4, an aggressive brain tumor that has since spread down his spine.  

Damon has had two brain surgeries and multiple rounds of chemotherapy and radiation treatments, which his little body can no longer handle.

He’s been through a lot at such a young age.

“I work with the bravest every single day but his bravery right now and what he’s going through it just amazes me and it’s heartfelt to be out here, it makes us feel good.  You think it makes him feel good, it brings out the kid in us just to be here with him and just to experience his birthday with him,” said Chief Anthony Galagaza, Bakersfield Fire Department.

“The chief told me that they see tragedy everyday so being able to put a smile on a kids face and do something that isn’t so heavy on the heart, it’s rewarding to them as well.  So they’re not just doing it to do it, it even means something to them so it makes it that much more special,” said Marillyn Cruz, Damon’s mom.
“Why not bring a fire truck out here and a whole fire crew.  This is what Bakersfield City Firefighters want to do,” Galagaza said.

The fire department also brought Damon birthday presents, which he couldn’t wait to play with.  

Damon and his family couldn’t be more grateful.

It’s a birthday they’ll never forget.  

“Really cherish all those moments with your kids.  The little things mean so much.  If you have a child and they are ok be grateful and appreciate every moment with them because you just never know,” Cruz said.

If you’d like to know more about Damon or would like to follow his battle, checkout his Facebook page: Keeping Up With Damon.

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