Tanner Hudson talks to CBS 13's April Hettinger about his war on his illness, and how you can help him win
YUMA, Ariz. (KYMA, KECY) - A Gila Ridge High School graduate and Arizona Western College welding student was devastated to find out he was diagnosed with stage four kidney cancer.
Tanner Hudson is looking to stay positive after his diagnosis.
It's been a long journey traveling back and forth to UC San Diego Moore’s Cancer Center for treatment, but he is hopeful he will beat cancer.
It started with back pain and a shortness of breath. Hudson's mom originally thought his illness was COVID-related.
After many tests, CAT Scans and biopsies, doctors broke the news.
"I got a thoracentesis which is like the draining of the lung because my lung filled up with liquid," Hudson said. "And then, I got a biopsy as well, and then they confirmed that I did have cancer."
Aside from the cancer on his kidney, the fluid in his lungs turned to pneumonia which made it hard to breath.
But, so far, he's kept a positive outlook.
"I'm pretty like down to earth so I'm kind of just ready for the next thing and always looking for what can help me as like nutrition and lifestyle," Hudson explained.
Emilie Hall, Hudson's girlfriend has been by his side through all the pain and treatments.
"I think he's handled this whole situation with grace," Hall said. "Personally, it took us all by surprise. You don't really expect that to happen, and no one prepares you, you know, mentally and physically."
Next week, he'll have his third immunotherapy treatment. After the fourth, doctor's will reassess the cancer.
"I started work back up again. So, that was pretty good," Hudson stated. "I'm not doing super heavy duty stuff like I used to, but I'm still getting back into that groove of things and getting back into the community."
The AWC welding department is doing an auction and other community organizations have already stepped up.
"We got together with this local coffee shop, Cafecito, and we paired up with them for a dollar per cold brew would be donated to Tanner, and then all baked good items will be donated to his medical funds," Hall explained.
Through this fundraiser, they raised about $4,000 for Hudson.
A GoFundMe has already accumulated more than $15,000 for his medical expenses.