Aidan Reed, 5, sells 3,000 drawings to pay for cancer treatment


A little boy fighting cancer is selling pictures he has drawn of his favorite monsters to pay for the treatment that could save his life.

Aidan Reed, five, from Kansas City, U.S., was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia on September 13 last year.

Since then he has undergone weeks of treatment as well as chemotherapy, infections, spinal taps and other painful procedures.

Parents Katie and Wiley were devastated by the diagnosis, but were given hope when experts said the type of cancer Aidan suffers from has a 90 per cent cure rate.

But the family faced a mountain of hospital bills and had to put their home on the market to fund treatment.

Amazingly, that sale is now on hold thanks to the idea of turning Aidan’s passion for drawing monsters into a money-generating life-saver.

The little boy has sold more than 3,000 drawings, many of them sketched in his hospital bed as he underwent gruelling treatment.

Total sales topped more than $30,000 and Aidan has sold enough that his family were able to take their home off the market and they no longer require further funding for his care.

He said: ‘I kind of like to draw knights and jesters and scary clowns and aliens.

‘I like to dress up as nice clowns and scary ones. I can be a wolf or a zombie, I would like to make masks and puppets when I grow up.

‘If I was a comic character I would be like the Green Goblin flying around throwing pumpkin bombs.

‘I want to say thank you to the people who are buying my monster drawings.’

Wiley Reed, 31, an aircraft components technician, said: ‘We are a very close family, and I think it is that that is helping us through this as well.

‘I have been overwhelmed by the reaction to Aidan’s drawings, I think for him as well it has been a great distraction from his illness.

‘I am very proud of Aidan, we all are. He had what is called a Hickman, it’s a line going in under the skin in the center of his chest.

‘It runs under the skin to an artery at his collar bone, and then down the inside of the artery to his heart, it’s how his chemo and fluids are administered.

‘Aidan’s Hickman got infected after a month and a half, it had to be removed immediately without time to schedule anaesthesia.

‘I held his hand and the side of his face as the Dr cut around the scar tissue removing the Hickman and a dime sized patch of skin from his chest.

‘He was unimaginable pain, and he was scared to death about what the doctor was actually doing, and as he was screaming and crying and then he sees my wife and I are crying as well.

‘When he realised we were crying he stopped, looked us in the eyes, and said in a concerned voice “why are you guys crying?”‘

Wylie’s sister Mandi Ostein, 26, was the one who came up with the idea to help pay the bills by selling Aidan’s artwork.

She said: ‘My lucky number was 60; I just wanted to sell 60 prints. And now here we are at 2,460.

‘I have two printers constantly going in my dining room. In between taking care of my baby, I’ve been trying to fill orders.’

Ms Ostein said she prints out Aidan’s drawings of Wolfman, Gill-man, Nosferatu the vampire and other scary monsters on quality photo paper so people aren’t just getting a piece of paper.

She has now received orders from Japan, Italy, Brazil and other far-flung locations all over the world.

She said: ‘It’s absolutely unbelievable. We’re just small-town people from the Midwest. This doesn’t happen to us.

‘Just thinking of him being sick, for someone in your family to be that sick, it’s just devastating.’


  1. judy on May 11, 2011 at 1:34 am

    I am a retired art teacher in Winston Salem NC. I SO
    wish there was something I could do to help this young man and his cause. Please contact and let me know if you need something….anything. You can find me on Facebook my name is Judy STONE STEVENS.