Louisville Magazine

NOV 2018

Louisville Magazine is Louisville's city magazine, covering Louisville people, lifestyles, politics, sports, restaurants, entertainment and homes. Includes a monthly calendar of events.

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LOUISVILLE MAGAZINE 11.18 67 Have you ever lost one of your pets? "No, but we have property where it's just woods, like acres of land, where we fish and drive ATVs. One of our dogs loves exploring, so when we go down there, she'll run away. She knows the place and will come back home at night, but sometimes it's really late, and it's kind of worrisome. I also have a hamster and he's gotten out of his cage three times. That can be scary." Where do you normally find him? "In my closet. But the other night he woke me up at 2 o'clock in the morning by crawling on my face." What do you think is the cutest animal ever? "I love sloths. When I first got into them, I watched a documentary on Netflix about a sloth named Velcro. I have a sloth mug, socks, a case for my iPod, a bracelet, two posters." What's your favorite subject in school? "I really like science. Like, space and the things we don't really know yet." Do you want to go to space? "I do. I think it'd be so cool to see all the separate galaxies. Because my brother in high school took an astronomy class and he was able to tell us about some basic stuff in the sky. He said that if you see a little cloud — or like a dusty part in the sky at night — that's a galaxy in the distance. That blew my mind." Stella Mastropaolo Age 13, eighth grade, Saint Leonard Community School Stella made a website to teach people how to care for animals and how to recover pets when they go missing. She's been playing softball since age six and also plays volleyball and does archery. Stella skipped a grade without missing a beat. Tell us about your brain tumor. "In seventh grade, I was having trouble with my eyesight. I went to the eye doctor and they said, 'You just need a new pair of glasses.' It didn't really help. It just kept getting worse and worse. We went to a different eye doctor. He kept looking at me and said, 'There's nothing wrong with your eyes. But I want you to get an MRI, because it's something between your eyes and the back of your brain.' The next morning, my parents get called after I get dropped off at school. "Your eyes, they have optic nerves that go to the back of your brain. They cross right in the middle of your brain before your pituitary gland, which controls your hormones and stuff. The stalk of the tumor was wrapped around the pituitary gland, so they cut that out. I no longer have any hormones in my body. It's easy to supplement, but it's sometimes an inconvenience. But it's not that bad compared to anything else that could've happened." What was it like dealing with that as a seventh-grader? "Pretty rough. But I see the world different now after that. I was in that hospital for two weeks. I saw kids that had to be in there for weeks on end, couldn't go home; some couldn't leave their beds. Now I feel like: If you have something bad going on in your life, you can always help someone else." What's something you want to learn more about? "I want to learn more about the brain and how the body works. How cancers and tu- mors can be prevented. If you figure out how they start, then you can figure out how to stop them from starting, so other kids don't have to go through what I've been through." Gray Leibundguth Age 16, 10th grade, Christian Academy of Louisville In seventh grade, Gray was diagnosed with a brain tumor that changed his perspective on life. Now tumor-free, Gray enjoys service-oriented activities, the youth group at his church and spending time restoring a 1950 GMC truck with his dad.

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