In Japanese folklore, the tiger is a symbol of protection and a guardian against evil. It’s also a symbol of the warrior that Justin truly is.
When Justin graduated from high school, he had the image of a tiger tattooed on his arm. He proudly shows his tattoo to everyone he meets. When he was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), he went into battle with his cancer like a true warrior.
He stayed strong the entire time and endured pain that no person should ever have to experience. At his worst moments in the Intensive Care Unit, when his body had gone completely septic, Justin would point at his tiger to give his family confidence that he was protected and not willing to give up.
Every day that Justin’s family awoke to see that he was still with them was a blessing. The fear of Justin losing the battle was all too real, but he never stopped fighting. He showed everyone who knew him that no matter how bad things look, there’s always hope.
Once released from the hospital, Justin had to learn to walk again, to build up strength that had been depleted during his treatment. His family and friends are amazed by his progress and his persistence to live a normal life.