Fund set up for 7-year-old battling brain cancer

Published 4:37 pm Friday, March 18, 2016


Family and friends are working to raise funds for an Opp Elementary first grader batting brain cancer.

Lilly Matt’s mother, Brandy, said Friday that her daughter, who is 7, was in Sacred Heart in Pensacola after her fever spiked after having chemo treatments earlier this week.

Brandy said that Lilly has battled kidney issues caused by hydronephrosis and that she has had blood on her brain caused by a tumor.

Lilly underwent brain surgery, as well.

Brandy said that Lilly has had 12 surgeries on her right kidney to combat the hydronephrosis.

While Lilly was in the hospital with a kidney infection she had a renal scan. A little while later, she developed a headache.

Eventually Brandy had to rush her to Andalusia Regional Hospital because she had become lethargic. She was rushed to Sacred Heart, where they discovered the blood on her brain.

An MRI would confirm a tumor on the brain and surgery was needed.

“She is currently blind in one eye, has short term memory problems and has trouble walking,” Brandy said.

Lilly had her first chemo treatment this week.

She got to come home, but her fever spiked and she was rushed back to Pensacola.

“Every week on Tuesday we have to come down to Pensacola and have blood work,” Brandy said. “On Wednesday she will have chemo and we will go home on Thursday.”

She has to take treatment for a year, but Brandy said they will make the trek to Pensacola weekly for at least six months.

Lilly is covered by Medicaid, which Brandy said he paying for her medical treatment.

However, the family has to purchase medical supplies and pay for the gas to and from Pensacola.

They have established a GoFundMe account to help pay for those expenses.

“All the people in Opp and everybody is supporting her,” Brandy said. “We are thankful for the prayers as well.”

Lilly won’t get to return to OES this school year, but instead will have a home tutor.

“They have this Monkey in my Chair,” she said. “This is pretty neat. The monkey would do everything Lilly would do and they take photos and the monkey sends letters.”

The Monkey in my Chair program sends out monkey kits to children battling cancer. The kit includes one big monkey, one little one and plenty of journals and handbooks. The bigger monkey sits in the student’s chair at school while they are undergoing treatment and the little monkey keeps the little patient company in the hospital while they are missing their friends at school.

Brandy said that Lilly is a fighter.

“She’s been through hell, but she’s always smiling and she wants to help others.”

To donate to the Matts, visit