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Young Artist
Paintings benefit brain tumor research at Barrow


Katelynn Lewallen with Dr. Kris Smith at Barrow.When Katelynn Lewallen, 10, finished her first two paintings on the new easel her parents had given her, her father, Jim, asked what she wanted to do with them.

“I think I’m going to take them down to Hob Nobs, hang them on the wall and raise money for brain tumor research so that other people won’t have to go through what Papa did,” she said.

“Papa” was Katelynn’s grandfather, James T. Lewallen, Sr., who died of a brain tumor in 2010 after 18 months of treatment at Barrow. Kris Smith, MD, was his surgeon.

“He treated my papa and our family really well in a bad situation and made us feel better,” said Katelynn.

Katelynn first visited Dr. Smith in January 2013 to present money she had raised through her artwork. Her initial goal was to raise $1,000 for brain tumor research at Barrow.

Dr. Smith thanked Katelynn for her gift.

“My own father was an artist,” he said. “Unfortunately, we share a connection—my father also died of a brain tumor. Raising money for brain tumors is a really cool thing to do. The money you raise for research makes a difference.”

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