New Book, “Hope in Me” Details the Most Private and Intimate Moments on One Family’s Journey of Hope Following Their Son’s Tragic Brain Cancer Diagnosis

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Cancer is an ugly disease, leaving a wake of despair, grief, and sorrow in its path. But what happens when a community bands together to change that cycle, even just for a moment in time?

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Joe Kettner writes, “Cancer can take things from him, but it will never take his heart, eyelashes, his soul, our love, or our hope.”

Author Kettner takes readers on an inspiring 15-month journey in his new book, “Hope in Me”. Sharing the family’s most private and intimate moments, he details the daily happiness, sorrow, and hope surrounding their family while living with brain cancer, and the legacy left behind by his 5-year-old son, Carter - a loving little boy with a cookie in his head.

“Hope in Me” is the story of a 5-year-old Carter Kettner, who captured the hearts of thousands across the nation, and left behind a memory that has continued to impact the community and hundreds of other children battling pediatric brain cancer. Carter was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor in February 2009. For the next 15 months, thousands of Carter’s biggest fans followed him on his journey through the journal entries of “Daddy Joe”. Strangers became friends, and friends became family as the community came together, all for Carter. From doctors appointments and clinical trials to the time it rained gumballs, and he was an honorary policeman, to the raw, emotional moments of his last breath, Joe Kettner has brought back these journal entries along with his
reflection on those events just 10 years ago. Follow along in this
heart-wrenching, emotional rollercoaster, as readers feel the pain from the words of Joe jumping out of the book and hitting them as if they were there, only to turn the page and find themselves torn by laughter by a classic Carter joke. The story of Carter will capture the reader’s heart, and inspire them to live each day with passion and joy.

Today, the Kettners continue to keep Carter’s legacy alive. Even through his pain, Carter continued to think of others and made one last wish - for everyone’s dreams to come true. That wish became the foundation for the Kettner’s 501c3 charitable organization, Cancer Kiss My Cooley, an organization whose mission is to create special moments and lasting memories for families living with pediatric brain cancer. In 2018, CKMC expanded their mission to include funding of brain cancer clinical research trials at Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. A portion of the proceeds from this book will be donated to Cancer Kiss My Cooley, in Carter’s honor.

Readers can purchase “Hope in Me” at traditional brick & mortar bookstores, or online at, Apple iTunes store, or Barnes and Noble.

For additional information or inquiries about “Hope in Me”, contact the Christian Faith Publishing media department at 866-554-0919.

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