Hero Beads

Miss O and beads


Kelly & Hero Beads

We supply our popular Hero Bead program to young people treated at American Family Children’s Hospital. Hero Beads let kids and teens with cancer or blood disorders commemorate their personal treatment journey in the form of a simple, visible medical record. They initially receive a cord with letter beads that spell out their first name, plus a Diagnosis bead and a bead representing the American Family Children’s Hospital. Every time a young person has a procedure or passes a particular milestone, a member of the medical team can give him or her a special bead to add to the cord(s) of beads. Over time, Hero Beads provide a symbol of each patient’s personal journey, a touchable testament to strength and endurance.

Patient families should talk to your Child Life specialist about the Hero Bead program. Patients who join the program in mid-treatment are welcome to obtain one or more cords and collect the beads they need to “catch up.” Patients who have already finished treatment or bereaved families may create a set by visiting the BCCN office. Call 608-231-8006 to set up a time to come in.

Here’s the list of available beads, subject to change:

Procedure / Experience

Bead Description


Air Lift

Helicopter Charm

American Family Children’s Hospital Bead

White Porcelain Rectangle w/ Red Kids

Biopsy Complete

Orange-Yellow-Red Striped Sphere

Birthday on Treatment

Balloons Charm

Blood Culture

Red-Green Striped Glass Cylinder

Blood Draw

Red Metallic Ball

Blood Transfusion

Red Heart

Bone Marrow Aspiration

Brown & White Swirled Tube

Bone Marrow or Stem Cell Transplant

Spiked Rainbow Ball


White Tube bead

Central Line Surgically In

‘Courage’ charm

Central Line Surgically Out

Smiley Cube Bead

Course of Chemo

Green Wooden Bead

CT Scan

Cat Bead

Day Treatment

Decorated Wood Oval


Gold Childhood Cancer Ribbon


Purple Wooden Ball

End of Treatment

Boy or Girl Dangle Charm

Finger Poke

Pony Bead

Hair Loss

Smiling Wood Disc w/ bandana


Green Turtle

IM Injection

Green or Pink Wooden Smiley Bead

Inpatient Admission

Bear Bead

IV Infusion

Multicolor Glass Flower Bead

Lumbar Puncture

Light Blue Disc


Pastel Sun Bead

Nuclear Med Scan

Gold Ball

Oral Med, new

Butterfly Bead

PET Scan

Round Pet Bead

Platelet Transfusion

Gold Disc w/ Moon, Heart, Star

Port Access/IV Placement

Red Striped Barrel w/ Blue Star


Blue Porcelain Disc w/ Yellow Sunburst


‘Hope’ Charm

Remission, No Evidence of Disease

Wooden Smiley Ball


Pastel Moon Bead

Shunt Insertion

Clear Tube

Stem Cell Harvest

Spotted Multicolor Glass Bead


Blue Star

Total Body Irradiation

Green Glass Star

TPN (IV Nutrition)

Holstein Print Cylinder

Travel To Distant Treatment Center

Red Train Bead

Tube Insertion (chest tube, g-tube, etc)

Striped Cube Bead


Blue & White Spotted Glass Cylinder (old)

Blue glass cylinder (new)


White Bone-Shaped Bead

Wish Granted/ Wish Trip


WOW Bead (Special Accomplishment)

Gold Glass Bead with Swirls and Dots

Years Off Treatment (1, 2, 3, etc.)

Number Beads