FOUNTAIN, Colorado — Hundreds of people met up at the VFW in Fountain on Saturday to help a local teen celebrate a very special birthday. Aiden Cooper turns 16 on Sunday.
Over the summer he was diagnosed with stage four bone cancer and recently learned he'll have to have his leg amputated.
His mother Tiffany shared a post on social media asking the community to help make his birthday special and the response was overwhelming.
"It's amazing," Aiden said during the party. "I was not expecting half the stuff as what ended up being tossed at me. It's a blast."
Two live bands performed for the Halloween-themed birthday bash. People from the community donated food and gifts. Others bought T-shirts and bracelets in support of the Cooper family.
"It blows my mind with so many people showing up to support our son, total strangers just showing up," Tiffany said.
The Cooper family learned about Aiden's diagnosis after returning from a family vacation in July.
"We had to take him to urgent care for some pain and that's how he found out that he had cancer," she explained.
Aiden began chemotherapy shortly afterward. His leg is scheduled for amputation on Monday. Aiden has kept a positive attitude despite the life-changing procedure.
"I mean it is what it is, you know," he said. "Stuff happens in life, God tosses stuff at you and you've just got to deal with it and move on."
Jay Briggs, a photographer and videographer from Colorado Springs, saw Tiffany's Facebook post. He left a comment offering his services.
"What was really neat was after I offered my services a lot of people started rolling in and like, I want to bring cake, I want to bring sodas, I want to bring a gift, I want to send a gift," he said. "The response was just overwhelming."
Briggs helped the family to plan the event and is making Aiden a music video to remember the party.
The veterans and auxiliary from Post #6461 have held two fundraiser dinners for the Cooper family since learning of Aiden's diagnosis.
"We wanted to alleviate as much as we could from the family as possible," said Travis Baker, Commander of VFW Post #6461.
When Tiffany contacted Baker to inquire about renting the Post for Aiden's birthday, Baker replied, "no, you can have the post."
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