8-year-old Aiken County girl battles brain tumor

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August 16, 2006

She's only 8 years old, but one Aiken County girl is facing a tremendous task.

Carley McMaster has battled a brain tumor since November.

News 12's Meredith Taylor visited the young girl to tell you about her progress.

These days, walking's a little harder for Carley McMaster.

She takes smaller steps, and it also takes a little longer to talk.

Carley's looking forward to the day she can walk by herself.

Her mother, Vindi, isn't surprised.

"She's a very independent child, and she's now getting a lot of that back," Vindi says.

That independence was taken quickly in November.

It started with extreme headaches. Doctors discovered a brain tumor, and two days later Carley went into surgery to remove it.

She went into respiratory failure and had three strokes.

"It was a very...uncertainty, no one was sure if she was going to make it through the night," Vindi says.

But Carley did.

She moved from MCG to a rehabilitation program at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.

Then, more news.

"We were thinking, excuse me? Are you sure you read that right? It can't be that. We've only been gone six weeks."

The tumor was rapidly growing back...and Carley was too weak for a second surgery.

So Carley's parents decided with doctors on chemotherapy and radiation treatment.

Against some recommendations, she did rehab at the same time.

"They showed her something one day, the next day she was doing it," Vindi says.

It was that desire to get better that has Carley here today.

She writes her feelings in a private journal.

She even shared her story in Atlanta before she left last month.

And amazingly, through the ordeal, her mother says she's never complained once.

"She's going to do this," Vindi says. "God has just wrapped his arms around her. He has a purpose for her and we just can't wait to see it."

That's a sentiment everyone shares, including those that love her most.

Carley's benign tumor is now very small. She visits doctors again next month.

If it's still there, she may consider a new treatment, taking pills for chemotherapy treatment.