Magician Criss Angel Opens up about His Son Johnny’s Battle with Cancer Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic
Famed illusionist Criss Angel opened up about his family's experience during the novel coronavirus pandemic as his 6-year-old son is currently fighting a "double threat."
Criss Angel and his wife Shaunyl Benson are currently in quarantine with their two children, Johnny Chrisstopher, 6, and 17-month-old Xristos Yanni. However, it's been an extra challenging time for them as a family since their eldest is in the middle of a cancer battle.
THEIR APPROACH TO COVID-19
During a recent interview with Extra, Criss Angel elaborated on the challenges they faced so far, as he called Johnny's cancer and the ongoing pandemic a "double threat."
Those with cancer already have weakened immune systems. While their families became used to the rigorous hand washing and sanitizing before the onset of COVID-19, Angel is not willing to go out and risk Johnny being exposed to the virus, as he said:
"Usually your child has immune-system deficiencies, and for Johnny and other children, it can be dire, life-threatening."
SOMETIMES HE HAS TO GO OUT
The only time Johnny goes anywhere is when he requires a blood transfusion or when he visits Cure 4 The Kids in Vegas a few times weekly. The rest of the time, the family enjoys being together - time Angel and Benson try to keep as positive as possible.
Johnny briefly went into remission after his initial leukemia diagnosis in 2015, and Angel shared news of the cancer's return early last December. In the months since then, Angel and Benson shared bits of their journey with fans.
FOCUSED ON THEIR HAPPY ENDING
Convinced that Johnny will "be healed," they talk to him from the perspective of that belief, but they make sure to do so in terms his young mind can understand while keeping it "optimistic" while Angel added:
"We try to talk to him with optimism and hope and support and the big keyword — is everything for us — is love and God. Like faith."
JOHNNY'S CHILDHOOD CANCER
The 6-year-old suffered from acute lymphoblastic leukemia, the most common type of cancer found in children between the ages of 2 and 8, and Criss Angel said that the treatment also contributes to the challenges.
Little Johnny had been on steroid treatments, which Angel explained altered his behavior. Where he used to be a sweet and loving boy, the steroids caused a "profound effect on his mood."
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