Meet Our Families – Collin Roberts

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Augusta provides a home-away-from-home for over 1,000 families each year and we love when our families share their stories. The Roberts family shared this story (edited for publishing).

Collin Roberts is no stranger to Ronald McDonald House Charities. He calls it his “home away from home”. At the very young age of two years old, he was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor. Although the tumor was able to be removed at a local children’s hospital, the specialized treatment he needed post-surgery was not available in his home town. Collin and his family traveled to Memphis, Tennessee where they stayed in the RMHC Memphis for 10 weeks, during the holidays, while he underwent radiation therapy to the bed of the tumor. Unfortunately, the tumor metastasized to a different part of the brain five years later, when Collin was only seven years old.

Another surgery was performed, and another round of radiation ensued. He and his family spent another ten weeks, again during the holidays, at the RMHC Memphis while he received treatment. Another four years went by with Collin doing well, then the tumor returned again. Another surgery followed by chemotherapy. Six months later, the tumor returned once more causing his family to seek further treatment options. This led them to Children’s Hospital of Georgia and Dr. Johnson’s clinical trial studying an immunotherapy drug and chemotherapy. He has now stayed at the RMHC Augusta for 1 to 5 nights every 1 to 2 months for the past 20 months.

Unfortunately, his tumor has returned for the fifth time and he is now receiving radiation therapy once more, during the holidays. He will be staying weekly from Monday-Friday until after Christmas while he receives the daily outpatient treatments. Collin and his family live two hours away.

Collin’s mom said, “After being on this journey for the last 12 years, the financial strain is insurmountable. It is truly indescribable what it means to our family to have RMHC. Not having to deal with booking hotels and worrying how to pay for those accommodations takes a huge portion of the stress and strain from our family, allowing us to simply enjoy our time with our son!”

Collin is now 14-years-old and loves to hunt, fish, and play video games, one of his favorite areas of the Ronald McDonald House. He’s a sweet, mild-mannered, country boy at heart who has the most positive outlook!

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Augusta serves over 1,000 families each year. Our volunteer-run community kitchen serves over 15,000 meals, and our volunteers and families run over 5,000 loads of laundry every year.

We hope that this story has inspired you to get involved and help families just like this one. The staff, our volunteers, and the Board of Directors thank the Heath family for sharing their story and we hope everyone will get involved.