Honorary Notre Dame team member JoJo Sult’s cancer battle continues

NOW: Honorary Notre Dame team member JoJo Sult’s cancer battle continues

Pierson Sult, or JoJo as his friends and family call him, is an honorary member of the Notre Dame football team through the Fighting Irish Fight for Life program. The 13-year-old was diagnosed with Ewing sarcoma in 2017. We checked in with JoJo to see how he’s doing.

This spring, JoJo’s cancer returned and he had to have emergency brain surgery. Even though he’s battling cancer once again, he hasn’t lost his fighting spirit.

"I just try to keep a positive attitude and video games is one of my favorite things to do and it keeps my mind off of it,” JoJo said.

JoJo has maintained that positive attitude for more than 3 years.

JoJo is now in his fourth bout with Ewing sarcoma. It started in 2017 in his arm and has traveled to his brain, rib and back to his brain.

Through it all he and his family have never lost hope.

"This week we did get really good, positive news,” said TJ Sult, JoJo’s dad. "He's under the care of the Cleveland Clinic now and Dr. Anderson had ordered reports, or scans MRI and pet scan on Tuesday and then Wednesday we learned the scans looked in good fashion, no new lesions and the lesions that were there have not grown. He has progressed onto his third cycle of what is chemotherapy now.”

JoJo’s positive outlook on life has resonated with so many people but especially the Notre Dame football team from Kyren Williams to Ade Ogundeji.

Last season he hit it off with Irish captain Daelin Hayes. Just before this Thanksgiving the two reconnected.

"He's really cool. I like how he can like connect to me and stuff,” JoJo said. "Just by trying to talk to me about stuff and somehow, some way, he basically just gets through."

What does if feel like to have athletes, celebrities and local community members connect with JoJo’s story and care about him?

"I don't know if I can sum it up in a word or a phrase. It's overwhelming, I guess is the best word. Here we are just a small family in South Bend, Indiana, trying to make it. To raise a family of four boys and the rug gets swept underneath your feet, but we take it one day at a time,” Sult said. "Overwhelming, all the support that we get."

"It makes me feel loved,” JoJo said. "It makes me feel like people have my back and stuff."

JoJo says he loves the connection he has with Daelin Hayes. He says they just get each other and he has been giving Hayes advice on mental toughness.

The family says they look forward to maintaining their relationship with Hayes even after he leaves Notre Dame.

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