Church community raises money for toddler with leukemia in North Haven

Church community raises money for toddler with leukemia in North Haven

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NORTH HAVEN — Members of the New Life Church in Wallingford are jumping into action to help one of their own as he and his family face an uphill battle with leukemia. 

Two-year-old Namaan Johnson was diagnosed with leukemia in 2018. Gina Queiroga, a member of the New Life congregation, noticed the tyke had come to church with a feeding tube and felt compelled to learn more about his story. 

“Jessica [Jenkins] told me about how he had leukemia and my heart just broke, being a mom,” she said. “So we talked about possible doing something for them for the holidays to try to raise money for them.” 

Queiroga, whose parents owns Bagelicious in North Haven, decided that the restaurant would work as a perfect venue for the fundraiser. 

“We figured photos with Santa would be perfect,” Queiroga said. “So what better way than to meet Santa while supporting a good cause?” 

Bagelicious will also be hosting a bake sale and raffle during the event as well. The event will be held on Saturday Dec. 21 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Presale admission is $15 or $20 at the door. 

Nicole Johnson, Namaan’s mother, said the family has been attending New Life Church for “the past eight or nine years.” Finding out that members of their church were rallying together to help her family was “humbling” for the mother of two to hear. 

“We feel like people have done so much for us, just emotionally and helping out with finances,” Johnson said. “We’re just really excited and happy and grateful.” 

Johnson also revealed that the family had almost lost Namaan after his liver nearly shut down during his chemotherapy. His systems were quickly shutting down, but the doctors at Yale were able to save him. 

“All things considered, he’s beating the odds,” she said. “The way he’s behaving and how all his counts have been looking...he really is doing a lot better than they’ve expected.”

Namaan’s treatments are expected to end in November of 2021. 

To find out more about Naaman’s battle with leukemia and the family you can visit their website at
Twitter: @everett_bishop