BEAR HUGGING & CANCER CRUSHING Helps Kids With the Challenges of Cancer


In 2014, there was an estimated 1,665,540 new cancer cases diagnosed in the United States, according to the American Cancer Society. This number also brings to mind the individuals' family members and support systems, which can often include children.

Eric Gilcris was diagnosed with grade four brain cancer in 2011. This news shocked the young, healthy husband and his wife Anna, especially when considering how their son would react to the upcoming changes.

"As parents, the first thing you think about is your child when you hear news as devastating as cancer," Gilcris said. "We weren't sure how to explain it to our son, how to help him understand the inevitable struggles, but we knew he had to be a part of the conversation."

Inspired by their own journey and determined to support others fighting a similar battle, Anna and Eric Gilcris created a charity jewelry line, Cancer Canknot, as well as a children's book designed to help families discuss the challenges of cancer.

"Bear Hugging and Cancer Crushing" works not only as an engaging, light-hearted story, but also as parental resource to help foster an open door of communication, strength and understanding among each family member. While not focusing solely on the medical aspects of the disease, the book highlights the child's experiences, perspectives and questions.

Anna and Eric Gilcris' jewelry line keeps the focus on the family and the united front of people affected by cancer, either as a survivor, family member or friend of a person fighting the disease. In partnership with a Vermont jewelry store, the couple will donate a portion of the profits from Cancer Canknot products and the book to cancer research.

For more information, visit

"Bear Hugging and Cancer Crushing"
By Anna and Eric Gilcris
ISBN: 9781483419909
Available in softcover
Available on Lulu Publishing, Amazon and Barnes & Noble

About the author
Anna and Eric Gilcris are the designers and founders of Cancer Canknot. The couple currently lives in South Burlington, Vermont, with their children, Bryce and Erica.

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