Friends Through Cancer Take National Tour

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ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) - When Evan Bartlett was an infant, doctors gave him a two percent chance of surviving his first year.

"They told my parents I wasn't expected to live the first year, second year, third year," says Evan Bartlett. "It was pretty much day by day."

That's a calender that Elija Accola knows well. "Cancer has been part of my life for the past several years," admits Elijah Accola.  "So when I saw that, it was awesome seeing him express himself."

It was a web video where Evan opened up about overcoming leukemia and the everlasting effects it's had on his life.

"I started reaching out telling my story and then more people started coming back to me and they started loving their life," says Bartlett.  "I was like. people need to know about this.  That`s when I started 'I Survived Cancer web series."

Eli contacted Evan to talk about his brain tumor, and soon the two found camaraderie through cancer.

"It's cool because we just met," says Accola.  "It`s been five or six months since we started talking and honestly I feel like he's my brother."

Now the two fast friends are embarking on an expedition to criss-cross the country.

"I was the only cancer survivor that I knew of growing up," says Bartlett.  "So I couldn`t relate to anybody."

They call their campaign "Discovering The Beating Path." They'll be couch surfing and stopping at camps nationwide to tell others that there is life after cancer.

"It's just cool it makes me feel good to just share my experience with them and give them hope," says Accola.

And hope is something these two have in abundance.

"Right before I put my feet on the ground I say today's going to be a beautiful day and that's how I try to set my days up," says Bartlett.

And that`s a good way of surviving each day, one step at a time.

Patrick Clark, News 11.

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