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HomeAt Home & BeyondBoy Battling Leukemia Receives “Electric” Donation

Boy Battling Leukemia Receives “Electric” Donation

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When 11-year-old Deegan Giglio was diagnosed with Leukemia in February of this year, it came as a shock to his entire family. What started out as a simple doctor’s visit for a bruised elbow turned into any parent’s worst nightmare after the checkup came back with heartbreaking results two weeks later.

This illness has been incredibly trying for Deegan, but he is strong. He has handled the devastating diagnosis with bravery and has approached the situation like “a little man,” his father said. Through everything, he does not complain. He knows that the treatments that are required for recovery are difficult, and he does what he has to do. “All-in-all, he is a good kid, and he has always been,” said his father, Anthony.

The cancer diagnosis has obviously affected not only his health but his ability to socialize as well. As most of his friends are at his school, being taken out of school due to Leukemia has made it difficult for Deegan to see them. The younger Giglio loves baseball, was pitching for a team coached by his father, and “pretty much everything the kid loved that he was doing […] had to immediately stop,” said Anthony. “It was just over.”

With his son’s birthday being around the corner, Anthony began to look into motorized electric bikes for Deegan. On Thursday, June 6, Giglio walked into the local Shock Powersports at 4:30 to purchase his son an electric motorbike. After having a conversation with Shock Powersports’ Aaron Nations regarding Deegan, Anthony left with an idea of the purchase he would make. That is where Aaron and Todd Nations stepped in.

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“It was actually my father-in-law [Todd] – the owner’s – idea,” Aaron said. “Anthony had approached us off of a Facebook Marketplace ad, and he was looking between two bikes, and it came to light that his son was taking Leukemia treatments […] So, I laid all this out. We were sitting around with our family and Todd said, ‘Let’s just give him the bike.’ I thought that that was super nice. Nobody missed a beat. [They] said, ‘Yeah, we love that. Let’s do that.’ Nobody even paused. So, it was great.”

By 7:30 that evening, Aaron contacted Anthony to let him know that the company would be donating the bike, which is valued at around $5,000, to Deegan free of charge. The Powersports dealer, which sells all-electric vehicles from golf carts to high-performance dirt bikes, opened their doors in August of 2023 and is family-owned. Aaron noted that he would deeply appreciate such a gift if his children were in need, so the decision was an easy one for the Nations family.

Once the blue Surron electric motorbike with EBMX upgrades was ready, Anthony and Deegan arrived on Friday morning to pick up the bike. Only Deegan did not know that the dirt bike was already his. After Anthony walked around the showroom pretending to assess different motorbikes with his son, Aaron surprised Deegan with the good news. The mood was joyous as the 11-year-old gave Aaron a hug and spent the next few minutes riding around on his new electric dirt bike.

“It just gives you some faith that there really are people out there that care, that are willing to take that kind of loss to make a kid happy,” Anthony said. “When he messaged me, I cried. It was a tear-jerker. I did not go in there to get something for free. I never ask for anything for free and I do not expect anything from anybody ever. It was just a real eye-opener.”

With Father’s Day having just passed, it is also important to remember the fathers who do so much for their families as well. Local boxing Coach Felix Montanez is the Giglios’ neighbor and has known Anthony for years. He praised the father of four for his perseverance and leadership during such times. Montanez noted that in a day and age where it is harder to find great father figures, Anthony stands out.

“I want to tip my hat off to Anthony,” said Montanez. “He is really a standup father, leads by example, a hard worker who has been able to withstand these trials and tribulations in life, and has been able to compose himself in the adversity of these tragic times. He has done a whole heck of a lot to make sure that his children, not just Deegan, are well taken care of.”

Thankfully, Deegan is currently in remission, but the process will still take multiple years to fully treat the brave 11-year-old’s cancer. The Giglios will continue to work until their son is healthy once again. The Nations family’s gracious donation of the electric motorbike should hopefully lift the boy’s spirits as he fights this disease.

Aaron Nations (right) adjusts Deegan's helmet as he prepares to take his new electric motorbike out for a spin. His father, Anthony Giglio (far left) looks on. [Photo by Austyn Szempruch]
Aaron Nations (right) adjusts Deegan’s helmet as he prepares to take his new electric motorbike out for a spin. His father, Anthony Giglio (far left) looks on. [Photo by Austyn Szempruch]
Aaron Nations (right) helps Deegan Giglio feel comfortable on his new electric motorbike. [Photo by Austyn Szempruch]
Aaron Nations (right) helps Deegan Giglio feel comfortable on his new electric motorbike.
[Photo by Austyn Szempruch]

Austyn Szempruch
Austyn Szempruch
Austyn Szempruch is a Graduate with Distinction, University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications. He's written numerous articles reporting on Florida Gators football, basketball, and soccer teams; the sports of rugby, basketball, professional baseball, hockey, and the NFL Draft. Prior to Hernando Sun he was a contributor to ESPN, Gainesville, FL and Gator Country Multimedia, Inc. in Gainesville, FL, and Stadium Gale.
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