WRAL.com at the State Fair

N.C. State Fair honors 7-year-old with 'Michael's Day'

Posted October 23, 2015
Updated October 24, 2015

— The North Carolina State Fair honored a 7-year-old boy who died in October of 2014 after a brave battle with neuroblastoma.

Michael Breuer was diagnosed with the disease at age four and was an avid N.C. State Fair fan.

Jessie Breuer, Michael's mother, said she was filled with emotion at the event on Saturday.

"I had instant tears. Michael's face is everywhere," she said. "You just get flooded with emotions. It's good and it's hard, and it's happy and it's sad."

Breuer said Michael's favorite ride was the ferris wheel.

"He loved everything about every ride," Breuer said. "Everything was, 'Do it again one more time.'"

On Saturday, the fair will host “Michael’s Day,” presented by Springfield Financial. The Ronald McDonald House Charities of North Carolina will host families fighting childhood disease with an all-expense paid day at the State Fair.

"When times were good, we went out and made the most of it when we could," Jessica Breuer said. "When times were bad, we did what we could to make him comfortable."

David Smith of the department of agriculture and consumer services, said Breuer’s grandmother reached out last year about making special accommodations for Breuer to visit the fair before he became terminally ill.

“After Michael passed away it just bothered me that we weren’t able to do anything,” Smith said. “So the staff here, we just brainstormed and said, ‘Let’s have Michael’s Day.’”

Smith said Breuer’s oncologist told him that often time siblings get left out because parents are concentrating on the child that is sick in the household.

“This is a chance for us to bring the siblings, and some of the other children that may be suffering from a disease—but primarily the siblings—to let them have a day of fun at the State Fair.

Hanna Markham, 6, who has lived with a tumor since she was a two-year-old, drove from Lumberton to take part in the festivities.

"Been in the hospital so much and had to stay away from home for surgeries," said Markham's mother, Melissa. "And for a kid, that's a lot."

About 225 people will be coming from Greenville, Durham, Chapel Hill and WakeMed’s Ronald McDonald House to celebrate “Michael’s Day,” Smith said.

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