Blue Springs boy with brain tumor will have large team in Head for the Cure 5K

BLUE SPRINGS, Mo. -- Brain tumors can strike anyone. Age doesn't matter. A 6-year-old Blue Springs boy has one, and that's one of several things about Brecken Simmons that can be hard to believe.

Brecken is the life of the party. The first grader loves to talk and joke.

"My parents talk all the time... I stay quiet all the time," he said.

Would you believe that Brecken didn't start talking until he was 2-and-a-half years old?

"He's definitely come out of his shell from when we got him," his mother, Patti Simmons, said.

When Brecken was 13-months old, Patti and Scott Simmons adopted him from an orphanage in Russia, just as they had adopted his older brother, Grant.

There's one more thing you wouldn't guess about Brecken.

"They took a picture of my tumor and found out we have one," he said.

Brecken has a low-grade glioma. It was discovered in April of last year after several episodes of headaches and vomiting.

"I just thought we were gonna check it and they're gonna say everything's okay and we could rule it out," his mother said.

The tumor is inoperable. It was attacked with 12-months of chemotherapy. Fatigue and nausea came with that.

"We were just trying to find something that would make me feel better. They were trying to find something," Brecken said.

The tumor is stable now, but will it remain so?

"Always in the back of our mind as parents we have to think, if he does something different, was it, is that the tumor? Is it growing, you know?" Simmons said.

It could make any parent feel helpless, but the Simmons' family has found one important way to help. They're supporting Head for the Cure, the 5k walk and run to fund brain tumor research.

"I like it 'cause we have as many people as we can to come," said Brecken.

Fifty people will be on Team Brecken with one goal -- a cure.

Head for the Cure starts at 8 a.m. Sunday at Corporate Woods in Overland Park. For more click here.