Cadillac Boy Rallies with Team MacKale to Raise Cancer Awareness

"Everyday you have the chances to do something nice in the world and you need to take those chances."

A young boy battling cancer with thousands supporting him worldwide…

Today, his community joined together again to help.

11-year-old MacKale McGuire has been battling bone cancer since last October.

Today, people in Cadillac rallied around him again to both help his family and raise awareness of the battle too many kids and other cancer victims are fighting.

The Cadillac Area Youth Advisory Committee and Michigan Blood teamed up at MacKale’s school today…Mackinaw Trail Middle School.

Each donation of blood raised money to help his family with expenses.

9&10’s Cody Boyer and photojournalist Jeff Blakeman sat down with MacKale and his family, who talked about the inspirational effort to help him and thousands of others.

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"It takes a lot of courage to face that at any age, especially being so young," says Paige Fiet, vice-president of the Cadillac Area Youth Advisory Committee (YAC). "That is MacKale McGuire, all the way.”

"I think one word to make him stand for right now is resilience," says Molly Mackey, family friend and member of Cadillac YAC. 2746 "It’s so heartwarming."

Courageous, resilient…words to describe this eleven-year-old boy battling bone cancer.

"I said, ‘Mackale, everybody says you are always smiling,’" laughs Marsha McGuire, MacKale’s mother. "He says, ‘Um, you know, it takes less muscles to smile so really I’m just being lazy.’"

Months after surgery on his leg, MacKale is leading a team of orange around the world… and at his school.

"We’ve been the recipients of so much kindness from our community," Marsha says. “We know that people are looking out for him. It makes this journey much easier. Much easier. We are not alone.”

"It is bigger than just mackale," says Mike McGuire, MacKale’s father. “As the shirts say, ‘No one fights alone.’ This community in Cadillac really has come out in full force. And not just Cadillac. There’s been people around the world with Team MacKale shirts on.”

MacKale’s dad joined the dozens who gave blood.

"It’s not just about MacKale, even though it is about MacKale but it’s about how the community can actually do something," Mike says. “They are looking for something to come together, to pull together, to do something different. MacKale just happens to be one of those people that is triggering people to think about doing something.”

…A belief shared by the Spartan fan behind it all.

"At times, it can be overwhelming and I think it’s just all the love and support has been brought together by our friends, family and people we don’t even know or ever heard of," MacKale says. "Really, we don’t need it and there’s a lot of other people who need it more than us. With this blood drive, it helps more people than just us. It helps maybe like three or four communities."

MacKale says he wants to raise awareness for more than just his plight.

With allies like MSU’s Matt Costello, he says the struggle is easier.

"That was luck when I got to meet him," MacKale says. "Sometimes, you have to work through the bad in order to get other good things out of it. Kind of like this. It I hadn’t ever gotten this, my life would be completely different."

“He daily reaches out to MacKale," Mike says. "‘How are you doing, buddy?’ We just really feel that we need to help support and do things that are bigger than us for other people. That’s what it’s all about.”

MacKale says while he appreciates the tremendous support, others deserve the attention more.

"We need it but really, we don’t, and there’s a lot of other people out there who need it more than us," MacKale says. "I just want them to know that everyday you have the chances to do something nice in the world and you need to take those chances and help other people and not always think about yourself."

The goal of the drive aimed at 170 donations.

Each donation meant a 10-dollar gas card from Michigan Blood to MacKale’s family.

MacKale, along with his parents, say they plan on paying everything forward in the future.