Park Ridge Teen, Cancer Survivor Realizes Dream At Wrigley Field

Lisa Fielding
August 07, 2019 - 1:37 pm
A Park Ridge cancer survivor and young baseball star spent the morning at Wrigley Field hanging out with his favorite player.

WBBM Newsradio/Lisa Fielding

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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- It's been a rough few years for Dylan Provenzano.

"When I was 12, I was diagnosed with Ewing Sarcoma," he recalls. A rare bone cancer was found in his fibula. He said he first felt the pain while playing baseball.

"My leg kept buckling, my left leg. My coach told my parents to have it checked out," he said.

"The diagnosis was gut wrenching. It brings you to your knees. It was one of the craziest, scariest moments of our lives," said Dylan's mother, Samantha Provenzano.

The Main South freshman went through 14 rounds of chemotherapy and intense physical therapy.

"He lost a year of going to school, a year of being with his friends. He's been though so much with the surgery and the recovery. Now he is stronger than he was before," said Dylan's father Adam Provenzano.

Dylan Provenzano and Albert Almora, Junior
WBBM Newsradio/Lisa Fielding

Throughout intense rounds of treatment and surgery, Dylan and his family watched Cubs games every night – a tradition they called “Cubs therapy.”

"Oh yeah, Cubs therapy," laughed Samantha. "It's what got us through. Going to Cubs games, watching Cubs games at home. It's always been those little moments. It takes your mind off what's going on and relax for three hours and enjoy the game."

The Provenzanos spent Wednesday morning at Wrigley Field, but this time, pre-game took on special meaning.

"Hey, buddy, I'm Albert, nice to meet you."

Dylan was able to shake hands and take photos with outfielder Albert Almora, Junior.

"How you doing? Good to see you. You still swinging it? Have a lot of fun," said Almora, who also presented him with a signed bat.

The teenager was also able to watch battling practice and enjoy the game thanks to the Cubs.

Dylan Provenzano with signed bat from Almora
WBBM Newsradio/Lisa Fielding

With the help of his therapist, Dylan was walking in 10 days, rather than doctor’s projection of 6 weeks

"I knew I wanted to play baseball again, so my therapy and my drive was about meeting that goal," he said.

ATI Physical Therapy CEO Labeed Diab said the team contacted us and shared Dylan's story.

"We couldn't be more proud of him. He's a very resilient kid. We helped him with his therapy, but he did this all on his own. We're grateful for where he is today," Diab said.

Dylan Provenzano's signed bat from Almora
WBBM Newsradio/Lisa Fielding

"To see where he was Jan. 17 and how devastated we were when we found out, to see where he is now. He's gotten so much stronger and healthier," Adam Provenzano said.

Dylan will attend Maine South in the fall. He just made a travel baseball team and hopes to pitch in the big leagues someday.

"I feel great. My body is much stronger than it used to be and I've been able to do so much more. I tell other kids like me to keep your mind positive and keep looking forward. It's been a crazy journey," Dylan said.