Sammy Colakidis
Humans of Woodlea

Sammy Colakidis

An inspiring attitude to life after being diagnosed with incurable cancer

Sammy Colakidis is a ball of fun, sass and love. In the face of receiving the heartbreaking diagnosis of incurable cancer, Neuroblastoma, at the age of three, Sammy’s attitude to life is truly inspiring. She would attend her appointments in her ruby red shoes, pretty dresses and headbands, ready to “kick cancer’s butt!”


Now six and a half, Sammy’s mum Kristy says she has shown true strength that a lot of adults don’t show, “She has had kids confront her about her hair. She has had kids ask her why she looks so different and she just answers like a Rockstar. She’ll say, “I don’t care, this is my hair. I’ve got hair, I’m a girl.”


“There is nothing that will stop her. She is determined. She knows she is different but she doesn’t let that stop her. If she sees another kid do something, she knows she can do it too. That’s what excites me about her,” says Kristy.

Following two gruelling years of treatment, Sammy and her parents have just returned from the US where she received her last round of treatment in a data-supported DFMO trial. While it was the first time Sammy’s dad Steve made the journey to the United States for treatment, it was also the first time Sammy got to enjoy a holiday. Stopping in New York for three days on the way home, Sammy loved seeing the Brooklyn Bridge and visiting the Lego and Disney shops. A truly special few days, Sammy now loves looking back at the photos she took.

As previous trips were under tight COVID restrictions, it was so beautiful to watch Sam enjoy herself for a little. She talks about New York a lot, Kristy said.


Of her prized possessions from her trip to New York is her Arista Cat Marie onesie and matching toy that were purchased in the Disney shop. She also has a NY beanie that she loves to wear. Ensuring her dad Steve felt included on the latest trip, she was quick to explain to him “this is what we do on the plane and this is what our American trips look like,” including showing him the hospital she visits. Sammy has a close relationship with her identical twin Alexandra and two older sisters Charlotte and Georgia, who enjoy doing gymnastics together on the weekends. Not shy of challenging herself, Sammy is looking forward to starting dance and piano lessons soon too. 

Sammy is now in her second year of primary school, attending Aintree Primary along with Alexandra. Whilst school has come with its challenges due to treatment damaging her hearing, as a true socialite, Sammy enjoys attending, learning and playing with the other kids. 


Known for her sassy and cheeky personality, always playing pranks at home, Kristy says Sammy has a really nurturing side that has stemmed from the years of care she received herself. Recently Kristy was quite sick and Sammy would put another blanket on top of her with a heat pack. “She learnt from the care we gave her, it was quite beautiful to see.” 


With treatments in the US being complete, the Colakidis family is focusing on living life to the fullest and creating memories. Whilst Sammy and her family have always focused on the positive, being able to move past survival mode and live life more normally has been a welcome step forward for them.


Sammy’s story is part of Humans of Woodlea, an initiative by the fully integrated master planned community as a means of highlighting the unique stories of its residents whilst showing its diversity and spirit.