Batesburg-Leesville, SC (WLTX) -- The Palmetto Health Children's Hospital is hosting Camp Kemo in Batesburg-Leesville this week. The overnight camp for children with cancer hosts more than 100 children free of charge each year.
Standing outside Palmetto Health Children's Hospital, they may not know one another personally, but their story's are the same. Three different parents, with three different kids, sharing one battle.
"I have no words for that day when I found out that she had stage four cancer," said Beverly Mentor.
While this year may be the camps 33rd anniversary, it doesn't get any easier for the parents as they say goodbye to their child for a week of fun.
"It's good that he's going to be around other kids that are experiencing what he's going through so it makes it easy," said Keta Coleman.
This week their story's cross paths as their children Nareka, Kennedy, and Reggie, say goodbye to the hospital and hello to camp grounds.
This year's camp theme is a "Fantasy Cruise," with activities including a scavenger hunt, Iron Chef competition, swimming, a red carpet dance, tubing a murder mystery game, and a carnival night.
"It's cool because you get to hear different story's and everybody relates to you in some kind of way," Nareka Mentor says her favorite part are the activities, while Reggie Parkman, just likes being away from mom.
"I can get away from her a little bit so she can have her free time to herself and it gives me free time to myself too," said Parkman.
Mom can't blame them.
"They're probably excited from getting away from me because I cuddle them so much," said a laughing Coleman.
As the buses take off, parents wave and hope, that a week of camp stories will help to take their minds off the one story that consumes their lives.
"I'm excited, but I'm kind of sad too. But I'm going to try and enjoy my week," said Coleman.
Camp Kemo is completely funded by community donations and is free of charge to the families.
Hundreds of volunteers, physicians, nurses and staff generously give their time to make this event possible.