REGIS, Wis. (WLAX/WEUX) – Two years ago, Ashton Adams was admitted to Marshfield Children’s Hospital after being diagnosed with a brain tumor.
A rare form of brain and spinal cancer took his life in April of 2020. Ashton’s father Martin, a long-time coach in the Chippewa Valley turned to football to give back to the Eau Claire Community, holding a football camp Thursday to honor his son, “Ashton’s Angels”.
Martin said, “It’s team Ashton, I feel like his spirit has created this, and that’s why we’re doing this. To keep his legacy going.”
Football players and coaches packed the field at Regis High School Thursday to take part in a football camp in memory of Ashton Adams.
“We just wanted to find a way to give back to all the people that were there for our family during Ashton’s terrible ordeal. Wanted to do what we could do to fight that cancer, do it to give back to anyone, any family that’s in a similar situation, do what we can to help them,” says Martin Adams.
Martin Adams and his family spent four months at the Ronald McDonald House in Marshfield during Ashton’s hospitalization. For 127 days, Ashton had a family member at his bedside.
“They became an extension to our family. They treated us like family when we were there, became a second home. We spent our holiday’s there. And I traveled back and forth from work, my wife was there, we would alternate on weekends, we did that during his time there,” adds Adams.
Built on the simple idea that nothing else should matter when a family is focused on the health of their child, Ronald McDonald House is free for families.
“We get to meet a lot of amazing families at Ronald McDonald House but the Adams family has a special place in our hearts. And most of the time at Ronald McDonald House we get to celebrate with families and unfortunately with the Adams and Ashton, we really had that tragic end, but we got to know them, we are part of their journey and we are so blessed to witness this, it’s just been amazing today,” says Iilee Pederson, Executive Director at Ronald McDonald House Charities.
For the more than 150 campers on the field, it was a day for football and fun, knowing an angel was looking down with a smile.
“It’s a really good cause for Ashton and Coach Adams family. Recognize Ashton and give him a good look in heaven,” says Braxton Jensen.
Coach Adams says his daughters miss their little brother and being on the field helps them feel closer to Ashton.
“They’ve been so excited for this camp… It was just great to see my daughter’s smile… it just is…”
All proceeds from the camp will benefit the Ronald McDonald House Charities on Marshfield. If you’d like to make a donation in memory of Ashton, you can make a donation here.