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A new chance at life in the new year for a 5-year-old from Waco

Indy Wagstaff rang in the new year by ringing his bell, telling everyone at McLane Children's Hospital he is cancer free at five-years-old.

TEMPLE, Texas — Imagine ringing in the new year, not just with a resolution, but with the promise of a new and healthy life.

Indy Wagstaff has exactly that to look forward to in 2023 after he rang the bell at McLane Children's Hospital Wednesday.

It's been almost a year since Wagstaff's family found out he had cancer right after he turned five. This wasn't just any kind of cancer, but a rare form called Wilms' Tumor.

Wilms' Tumor is a rare form of kidney cancer that affects children, causing swelling, abdominal pain, and a mass in the abdomen, along with other symptoms.

Indy's mom, Kara Wagstaff, recalled that when Indy first was diagnosed they were sitting in his room when they all heard someone else ringing their bell.

"It felt so far away for us, so it does feel surreal for it to finally be here," Wagstaff said.

After surgery, chemo and spending four to five days a week in the hospital numerous times, the family can finally say Indy is cancer free.

They said they're thankful for having a hospital so close to their home in Waco. Without it, they'd have to go all the way to Dallas or Houston.

"I think this day came on really fast and it's weird that I'm here so it's like, pinch me," Indy's dad, Kyle Wagstaff, said.

Aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents joined Indy and his parents when he rang the bell, along with every nurse that helped Indy along his journey.

Indy was also awarded two pins that will remind him of his survival and a medal that the Killeen Lions club made possible for Indy to have.

When everything wrapped up at McLane Children's Hospital, everyone enjoyed cupcakes.

"We're really looking forward to all the time we're going to get to spend with Indy," Kara said.

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