Emma battled cancer for most of her life. At seven months old, she was diagnosed with a rare brain tumor and her family has left no stone unturned to help her. When she was six, she and her family visited Boston for her treatment, which led to an unpleasant encounter. Brent Gehring was carrying his daughter after dinner, and a total stranger called out to him, “What the f**k are you doing? That’s what’s wrong with kids. Make her walk.”
For a moment, Brent was enraged. But he chose to respond calmly, saying,
“My daughter has been carrying my faith and my strength for the past 5 years since she was diagnosed with a brain tumor. She can’t walk but I am happy to carry her because of all the amazing things she has taught me through the years. So I would advise you not to address my daughter in any way other than respectful.”
A Powerful Moment of Kindness
Brent shared this exchange on social media, along with the many things he’s learned from Emma. “I thought this is a powerful moment and a powerful time to share a story of the right way of doing things. To think I would be sitting here five years after post-diagnosis and think that this has been a gift, is crazy.” 
Brent and the stranger talked further and by the end, they were both crying. “One that needed to have his eyes opened to what real life and real love is and one that is always needing a reminder that good can come from any situation,” Brent wrote in a Facebook post. Brent even thanked the stranger for his comment because of its amazing learning experience for everyone. Because of Emma’s condition, the family, including her two brothers Aiden and Easton, went to Boston every three months. And a few days after that trip, the family learned their daughter would need her seventh round of chemotherapy. 
Emma’s tumor started right behind her right eye then spread to the right side of her brain. At the time of this incident, the tumor took over a third of her brain, making her unable to walk without a walker.
“You take for granted that your children will be healthy and to hear that one of them is not I think is just a really hard thing as a parent to understand and come to grips with,” said Kathryn Gehring, Emma’s mother.