SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The Ocean Beach community is reaching out to help a preschooler who is battling leukemia. On Tuesday, family, friends, teachers, and classmates packed Pizza Port to help raise money for five-year-old Roc Wooldridge.
His father had to leave his job as a utility locator to help his mother care for Roc and his four other siblings, one whom is autistic.
It has been a challenge, the family said, they could not do without the help of loved ones, friends and the community.
Roc was diagnosed with B-All leukemia around Easter Sunday, and on Tuesday, 20-percent of sales at Pizza Port in Ocean Beach went to his family.
"It's humbling and it's encouraging," said Roc's father, James Wooldridge. "At times at night I cry out and pray and ask the lord to touch him and heal him," he said.
Roc is on his 29th day of chemotherapy. He loves superheroes and his mother Aimee, helps him keep a daily journal online. His preschool teacher shares pictures, cards and crafts to share with Roc at the hospital.
“We have something called ‘Monkey in my Chair', it takes the child's place in the classroom and children can write cards," said Kathy Burchett. “It helps him make a connection.”
Roc had a tough day and was not able to attend the fundraiser, but he did make a poster for people to write messages and draw pictures for him.
“It's heartbreaking, when we first found out it was a big shock for us and we have to be strong for them,” said Roc's aunt, Lydia Cossio.
Tough for Roc's older brother to watch but says he stays hopeful, "It's hard, but I know he is going to get through it," said Roc's brother.
Doctors told the family Roc's leukemia has a 90 to 95 percent cure rate, but he will have to be treated for the next three-and-a-half years.The family has set up a gofundme account. if you would like to follow Roc's story and make a donation click here.