Teen with cancer jetpacks in California to help fulfill bucket list

Sunday, September 18, 2016
Cancer-stricken teen jetpacks in Newport to help fulfill bucket list
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A teen with cancer came to Newport Beach to ride a water jetpack for the first time as he travels around the country crossing off his bucket list.

NEWPORT BEACH, California -- Joy: That's the best way to describe the look on Simon Jones' face while riding a water jetpack for the first time.

The 17-year-old and his family came to Newport Beach from Omaha, Nebraska to experience this.

"It was like flying. Not the falling part but the control that you were flying."

Simon is an adrenaline junkie. He loves feeling his heart race.

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He's also fighting a rare form of cancer, desmoplastic small-round-cell tumor, diagnosed three-and-a-half years ago.

He's undergone several surgeries and rounds of chemotherapy, and was cancer-free for a while, but now it's back.

Simon's scheduled to go on a clinical trial in a few weeks.

"His oncologist has told him that without a miracle, he only has months to live," said Brenda Jones, Simon's mother.

Simon took that news and came up with an idea - a two-week trip to cross things off his bucket list.

So far, he and his family have gone rock climbing in Colorado and ziplining in Utah.

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He bungee-jumped off the Stratosphere in Las Vegas.

And now he's flyboarding with Jetpack America in Newport Beach.

Simon has been logging his experiences on his Facebook page: "Simon Says: Live a Better Life."

He hopes to inspire others to persevere and rejoice even in suffering.

"He has continued to fight all the way through, he's never let cancer define who he is," said Brenda Jones.

As Simon says: "There's no point in not being strong and no matter what life throws your way, you can always use it to make the world a better place."