Scott Tolzien, young Jaxson Hinkens form unique bond in tough time

MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- Scott Tolzien has made a good impression while on the Green Bay Packers. That's why he's on the roster as a backup quarterback. But the impression he's made on two youngsters facing battles much tougher than the ones on a football field -- will last far beyond any game.

On a recent off day Sunday, Tolzien was at Game Day Sports Bar in Appleton -- helping out a boy who has made an impact on his life that will last forever.

In the summer of 2009, six-year-old Jaxson Hinkens learned he had high-risk, stage 4 neuroblastoma. Tolzien was playing for the Wisconsin Badgers then -- and visited Jaxson at American Family Children's Hospital in Madison. They became best buddies.

"I think back to my college days -- you're kind of living in a bubble. Focuses are football and school -- and you kind of have the blinders on," said Tolzien. " And then someone like Jaxson comes into your life and you realize what's really important."

Jaxson's treatment plan was a grueling 15-month journey that included high-dose chemotherapy, radiation, surgeries, a stem cell transplant and immunotherapy. Through it all, a motto was born -- Fear nothing.

Jaxson, now 11, was a healthy, athletic kid for three-and-a-half year. But all that changed when he went for his last scan in March -- the cancer had returned. Now, he's undergoing more chemo, radiation and immunotherapy -- this time at Sloan Kettering in New York City.

Through the painful ordeal, the friendship of Tolzien has helped lift Jaxson and his family.

If you'd like to make a donation to the Jaxson Hinkens Benefit, you're encouraged to send it to:

Jeff Vanstrom
3215 S. Hummingbird Ln.
Appleton, WI 54915