At 13 years old, Rhett Hall made the decision to stop cancer treatments at Children's Mercy Hospital.
A year later, his mom, Angie Hall, said he beat the odds but passed away this weekend.
Rhett was first diagnosed with Medulloblastoma when he was 12, and doctors thought it was in remission. When it returned, the cancer had spread from his brain into his spine.
“They told him he had three to six months if he didn't choose to go through chemo treatment, and up to a year if he did go the route with chemo,” said Angie Hall.
Rhett chose to forego treatment and beat the doctors’ odds by living another year.
“Everybody that he's ever met has thought he was the most courageous person and way wiser beyond his years. They couldn't imagine being an adult making the decisions that him, at 14, was able to make,” Angie Hall remarked.
Last year, all Rhett wanted was a four-wheeler so he could ride in the fields with his younger brother. He got his four-wheeler and so much more.
Angie Hall said, “He had more joy and happiness on the four-wheeler than he probably had with anything.”
Rhett also loved to hunt and got to shoot a trophy buck.
He got to fly to Houston and meet his favorite football player, JJ Watt.
Make-A-Wish sent the Halls to go snorkeling in Hawaii.
Rhett even got to go to prom. Angie Hall said, “I think he was able to fall in love; I think he at least had that experience.”
At just 14 years old, Rhett planned his own funeral.
“He planned to have his casket pulled from the church to the grave site behind his grandma's John Deere 60 tractor. He wanted to go out different. He wants his little brother to ride his four-wheeler in from of the funeral procession,” Angie Hall said.
His family said they know Rhett will be watching.
And if the family had any regrets, Angie Hall said, “No, we asked him up until the last week. 'Rhett, if you could do it different, would you do it different?' He said, ‘No, I’m with my family.'”
Funeral arrangements for Rhett:
- Visitation: 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday at River of Hope Fellowship
- Funeral: 2 p.m. Thursday at River of Hope Fellowship
Shannon Halligan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.