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Published August 15 2012

Frazee boy to be North Dakota Guard ‘Pilot for a Day’

FARGO – A 5-year-old Frazee, Minn., boy will be a “Pilot for a Day” at the North Dakota Air National Guard base on Friday, the Guard announced in a news release.

Garrett Beckwith has been fighting cancer for nearly six months.

He’ll be promoted to an honorary general in the North Dakota National Guard. He’ll receive his own flight suit and take part in several activities, including using a flight simulator, touring a C-21 Learjet, and taking part in a fire department demonstration.

Garrett was diagnosed Feb. 27 with acute lymphoblastic leukemia and is receiving chemotherapy.

In April, he came down with pneumocystis pneumonia and a fungal infection in his lungs. Only 10 percent of children live through that form of pneumonia. He was released from the hospital 21 days later.

Two weeks later, during a chemotherapy treatment, he went into epileptic shock with a high fever and could have died.

The Pilot for a Day program honors children who are fighting or have overcome a life-threatening illness or condition.