The FOJ Experience
Headline: Drexel lacrosse gives Logan Huston a huge boost right when he needs it
By Michael J. Lewis
Logan Huston was done.
Done with all the doctor’s visits and the poking and the prodding, the needles and the MRI’s, the chemo and the illness and the time in hospitals.
He’d reached his limit. Oh sure, the 10-year-old South Canaan, Pa. native had had a great last few months since he was adopted by the Drexel men’s lacrosse team, commuting two hours each way to practices and games, and making friendships that will last a lifetime.
But even with that, he was done. As he sat in the doctor’s office on October 26, the nurses had to give him an IV with contrast, and multiple attempts to get the IV started were unsuccessful.
Logan started crying, his mom Jodi recalled. Bawling, screaming he didn’t care if he died already, that he was in a lot of pain, and he was ready to quit.
“I told him he can’t die, I can’t live without him,” Jodi said in early December. “But that didn’t seem to have an effect. So I thought, my best defense against this attitude was to talk about his buddies on the lacrosse team.”
Faced with a screaming child, Jodi used some psychology on her son. She told Logan that, OK fine, you don’t have to fight anymore. But if you’re going to give up, you need to call the Drexel lacrosse coach and players. You’ve got to get Jordan Klunder on the phone, and give Jake O’Donnell a ring, and head coach Brian Voelker had to be told, too. You’ve got to tell them that they won’t have their biggest fan and supporter anymore.
That did it. Logan quickly changed his mind and shouted that he wanted someone from the IV team to come back and try again.
“I just was so frustrated, but my Mom really snapped me out of it,” Logan said. “I feel very lucky to know these guys, guys I’ll know my whole life.”
Is it a stretch to say that Logan Huston’s bond with the Dragons lacrosse team saved his life? Maybe.
But not by much. As hundreds of children have found out over the past decade, a Friends of Jaclyn Foundation adoption can make such a difference in the lives of athletes and their adoptees.
“I honestly think every single Division I, II, and III team in America should have to do a FOJ adoption,” said Drexel’s Jake Gennosa. “To be around a kid like Logan and his awesome family, it makes everything we do so much better.”
Logan’s medical journey has been incredibly rough; he has had 11 tumors all over his body, including four on his brain. The type of tumors he has, plexiform tumors, can’t be removed by surgery because of the fear of excessive blood loss that could kill him.
Radiation, Jodi explained, can’t be done on the tumors, because of complications that would result possibly resulting in some non-cancerous tumors turning into cancer.
So Logan has had chemo, but that’s resulted in a poor digestive tract among other problems.
The Drexel team knew all this when they adopted Logan in January, 2016. For Klunder, Logan’s closest friend on the team, the desire to help was immediate.
“I got pretty emotional about him when I met Logan,” said Klunder, who graduated last spring. “He was so young and had gone through so much, that I felt we had to go above and beyond to make him feel good.”
According to the Hustons, the team absolutely has done that. Whether it’s text messages and phone calls before doctor’s appointments, or taking Logan trick-or-treating at Halloween, the Drexel team has been a godsend to the Hustons, taking in Logan’s 13-year-old brother Robbie as well.
“It’s like I adopted 49 sons,” Jodi said with a laugh. “From one of the seniors giving Logan his senior Drexel watch, to him getting to run out on the field before the game, it’s just been an amazing experience.”
The Drexel players couldn’t agree more.
“To see his smile when he comes to practices and games, it just makes you feel like you’re making a difference,” O’Donnell said. “He’s such a great kid and we’re lucky to know him.”