Community surprises teen battling cancer with parade for his birthday

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IRVINE, Ky. (WKYT) -- A Kentucky teen received more than 10,000 birthday cards for his 16th birthday, but that wasn't the only thing he received. The community organized a parade in his honor.

Aaron Stamper was diagnosed with leukemia, and his only birthday wish was to receive birthday cards from people in his community.

Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari was one of the people who sent Aaron a card.

It all started in December when the Make-a-Wish foundation asked Aaron what he wanted for Christmas. He asked for Christmas cards. Then when his birthday rolled around, he made the same wish.

"I just wanted to see how many I could get," Aaron said. "I did it for Christmas and it was really fun, so I thought I would do it again and it completely blows out Christmas."

Last Sunday, first responders lined up at Aaron's home in Irvine, Kentucky for a special parade. Some people even stopped the procession to add more cards to his already large stash.

He said this sweet 16 birthday party was filled with tears, smiles and sore thumbs.

"They actually are. I've got a couple of paper cuts (on my thumbs)," he said.

Aaron's original wish in December was to make sure everyone had a toy on Christmas. The Make-a-Wish foundation obliged, but made sure he picked another wish for himself.

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