When Kaden Peebles began her junior year at Nashville High School, the 17-year-old cheerleader started to experience pain in her hip. At first, she treated it with ibuprofen and thought it might be a sports injury.
However, the pain became worse, and Peebles underwent a scan which revealed a malignant tumor and a diagnosis of Ewing’s Sarcoma, a rare, aggressive bone cancer.
Peebles tells the story of her battle with the disease in One True Scrapper: A Memoir of Childhood Cancer, Good Eyeliner, and a Fighting Spirit.
The book was printed by Et Alia Press.
Two book launch parties are planned in early July.
The first bill be July 6 from 6-8 p.m. at M2 Gallery, 1500 Main St. in Little Rock. The gallery is owned by former Nashville resident Mac Murphy.
The second launch will be in Nashville July 8 from 2-4 p.m. at Amelia’s Picalily, 218 S. Main.
The 310-page book is currently in presale. The cost is $18.95 per copy.
Peebles, now 24, fought cancer for nearly seven years. She underwent 35 rounds of chemo, 40 radiation sessions, two bone marrow transplants and more than 180 blood transfusions.
In her book, she reflects on “how her relentless charge to survive cancer with her family, healthcare team and community by her side has shaped her young life, guided by the belief that what might take her body could never defeat her spirit,” according to the publisher.
Dr. Jay Weldon’s, a pediatric neurosurgeon, said Peebles “writes of her journey through childhood cancer with clear prose and spot-on candor. One True Scrapper is a story about phenomenal resilience in the face of near insurmountable odds and of the girl who grew into a remarkable young woman while living through it all.”
Dr. David L. Becton, professor and chief, pediatric hematology/oncology at Arkansas Children’s Hospital and the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, said, “This astounding, inspirational journey can help us all face difficult challenges as we learn from a small-town teen whose life is repeatedly turned upside down. Peebles fights cancer and the traumatic, dangerous, and painful treatments that go with it; she fights the loss of a normal high school experience; she fights multiple recurrences, new diagnoses, and bone marrow transplants; she fights the normal urges to give up hope. She wins all of those fights and not only provides an example of resilience, but practical ways to find light in the hardest of circumstances.”
Peebles is a magna cum laude graduate of the University of Central Arkansas. She was selected as the university’s history department Student of the Year in 2021-22.
She is a Juris Doctor candidate at Oklahoma City University School Law and was named a Hatton Summers Scholar, recognition which provides full tuition and fees, along with book and living allowances.
She continues to serve Arkansa Children’s Hospital where she was treated, serving as a patient ambassador for the facility. She is a member of Friends of ACH, planning events and raising funds for the hospital. She has served on the ACH Youth Advisory Council.