Update on Starchild Abraham Cherrix

Compared to the usual topics discussed during the week, I normally like to try to keep the weekend fare on the ol’ blog relatively light and fluffy (mainly because traffic usually falls around 50% and I like to post my serious material on skepticism and science on days when I tend to have the most readers), but to me this can’t wait until Monday. As you may recall, a couple of days ago, I wrote about Abraham Starchild Cherrix, a 15-year old who, with his father, has rejected conventional therapy for his Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. It now looks as though he will get to go to Mexico:

ACCOMAC, Va. (AP) – A judge agreed to let a 15-year-old cancer patient return to a Mexican clinic to continue an alternative medical treatment, as long as he has a diagnostic X-ray first.

Abraham Cherrix, who has Hodgkin’s disease, also was ordered to return to court June 29 for a hearing to determine whether he can make his own medical decisions.

The case landed in court in March after the Chincoteague teenager, whose disease remained active despite three months of chemotherapy last year, refused to go forward with a doctor’s plan for more chemotherapy and radiation.

Last week, Judge Jesse E. Demps filed a temporary order finding parents Jay and Rose Cherrix neglectful and requiring them and the county social services department to share custody of Abraham.

The judge also forbid the family to leave the state and ordered Abraham to undergo any diagnostic testing deemed necessary by doctors at Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters in Norfolk.


Last Friday (before Memorial Day), as you may recall, Cherrix showed up at a hospital to have imaging studies done to assess the status of his disease but refused to undergo them. I just hope that the “single X-ray” that he’s been ordered to undergo is a CT scan of the neck, chest, abdomen, and pelvis, as that’s the only test that will fully stage his disease. Of course, my question to the judge would be: What on earth makes you think that Abraham, once safely across the border in Mexico, will come back to Virginia any time soon or will show up for that June 29 hearing?

In any case, unless he and his father come to their senses, it looks as though Abraham Cherrix, like Katie Wernecke before him, is doomed.