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Christopher Goheens honored as a 'Young Hero'

"It brought tears to my eyes," she said. "And not only were the members of the Vermont Air National Guard there, but his cardiologist, his pulmonologist, and all the nurses and staff we see at the Children's Speciality Center in Fletcher Allen were there and they got cake for him. They made him feel special."

As a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, Amy said she was proud both of her son and of the VTANG for offering such encouragement for children through the Young Hero Award.

"I'm very proud that the Vermont Air National Guard has this award for deserving people," said Amy. "As Christopher's mother, I'm just beaming. I know how hard he had to fight to survive this summer, and he completely deserves this award."

Christopher has been doing "remarkably well" in recent weeks, said Amy. He returned to school in September, attending only half-days and undergoing physical therapy three times a week. He finished physical therapy in October and started back to school full days in mid-October. Surgery he underwent during the summer ultimately stopped him from coughing up blood, though Amy noted doctors could not guarantee that wouldn't happen again.

However, Amy and the rest of Christopher's family holds onto hope.

"We can just take things a day at a time and enjoy them," she said.

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