My Story

Zaida (ZAY-da) turned 3 in September 2007. We learned she has cancer on October 31st. After eight very emotional days in the hospital we learned it was peritoneal carcinomatosis, resembling ovarian cancer and mesothelioma (neither of which should happen to a 3-year-old).  She is now 9 and still an energetic and bright girl, even after all she has been through.

Click on 'Read More' below for more information about Zaida and how to DONATE TO ZAIDA directly through Zac's Legacy where the money will go towards her medical care.

Zaida has been a cancer patient for almost 7 years!  She had 3 years of various chemos and significant surgeries.  After this, we had 22 months of remission!  Treatment-free!  Zaida relapsed in April 2012, and had surgery and radiation (first time for radiation) over the summer.

She is currently finishing up 2 years of post-radiation chemo, and her doctors are re-evaluating her to determine what's next.

She has a wonderful sister Runa (age 12) and they love to play together (and fight together). Please help support us in creating history - by helping us beat this unique illness. We welcome all the love and support we can get. Please sign our guestbook and read our journal. 

There is a fund set up for Zaida's medical care.

Donations can be sent to:

Zac's Legacy Foundation, Inc.

2990 W. 29th Street, Suite 1

Greeley, CO 80631

Please write 'Zaida Mattson' in the memo portion of your check.

Visit All donations marked for Zaida will go directly back to the family. Also, visit for information on a tax deductable receipt.


Nichol Mattson posted a new journal entry, "Another School Year Begins".

Today, Zaida started 5th grade!  She’s come a long way!  When she was a small and adorable 3-year-old, we were suddenly faced with not knowing if she would ... Read more

Nichol Mattson posted a new journal entry, "Bake Sale this Tuesday!".

Zaida continues to do very well.  Her health remains stable.  She has been on the same 2 chemo drugs since October 2012, and after 2 years (this fall) we will ... Read more

dawn starkey signed Zaida's Guestbook.

How wonderful!  That is great news!  I am glad to hear how well you all are doing!Dawn Read more

Su signed Zaida's Guestbook.

She had a way to take care of YOU - Yaaa!  Hope you're feeling better - coughs can seem to hang on forever. Read more

Sarah Kleinhans signed Zaida's Guestbook.

That is SO wonderful. I know, sometimes these things can be blessings. So happy to hear success for BOTH of you! You are an incredible mom. Read more

Nichol Mattson posted a new journal entry, "Success, Finally".

Short story:Zaida is in school on her own!Long story:After the first month volunteering at school, I was not with Zaida very much (mostly just lunch time and a few ... Read more

Nichol Mattson added a new photo.

Nichol Mattson added a new photo.

Nichol Mattson added a new photo.

Su signed Zaida's Guestbook.

Ack, indeed!  You are NOT selfish, or lazy, or any of those negative things.  You have been dealing with a life-threatening illness with a zillion unknowns for YEARS.  ... Read more

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