Hundreds donate to give cancer survivor new teeth

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGO) -- A young cancer survivor in Northern California has a reason to smile today. An online campaign to help him get new teeth has surpassed its goal.

Sixteen-year-old Alex Hunter lives near Bakersfield. He was just 4 when he was first diagnosed with a rare type of cancer. Then, nine years later, he was diagnosed with thyroid cancer.

After years of aggressive chemotherapy, doctors said he was cancer-free in 2003. But he continues to live with the treatment's side effects.

"I had my teeth removed because they're all loose and, actually, when they fall out new teeth won't grow in," Hunter said.

"It's obviously an expense we did not expect. You know, I always tell him, 'Just one day at a time,' and that's how we've always taken it," mom Liz Hunter said.

Insurance doesn't cover dentures, so the family turned to the Internet to raise money.

In just 20 hours, 240 people contributed online. They raised more than $16,000, surpassing the campaign's goal of $11,000.
Copyright © 2021 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.