13-year-old wins Tejano Music Award after battling brain cancer

By  | 

MIDLAND, Tx. (KOSA) - Last month, a Midlander took home a Tejano Music Award for best new male artist.

That artist beat the odds both on stage and from his hospital bed.

Since releasing his album in December, Tristan Ramos has made a name for himself in the Latin music world winning a major award—at 13 years old.

“Oh man, I was so happy,” Tristan said. “I gave my dad a big hug and I was wanting to cry.”

Tristan’s mother said her son always had a knack for music.

She said he picked up an accordion at only six years old and fell in love.

“And he just wanted to take his accordion everywhere,” Cassandra Ramos said. “He would beg me: ‘Mom, can I please play my accordion out here’ and I was like ‘no, you can’t do that.’ He’s like ‘I just want to play’.”

That raw talent earned him a spot on stage with A.J. Castillo who he toured with for three years before launching his solo career.

But one day when Tristan was recording his album, everything changed.

“Towards the end I couldn’t remember the words or the notes to push,” he said.

His parents rushed him to the hospital where doctors found his brain had been filling with fluid and a tumor had grown behind his eye.

His mother said her son almost died that day.

“It felt like a nightmare,” Cassandra Ramos said. “Like a nightmare I couldn’t wake up from.”

For a while, after his two brain surgeries, Tristan couldn’t see or walk and was often in pain.

But that didn’t keep the accordion out of his hands for long.

As a matter of fact, he found a new reason to keep playing when he came out of surgery and a young boy with the same condition looked up and him and said:

“Hey, you look good, you can do this man,’” Tristan said. “That had me emotional. So, I really wanted to help someone like that.”

Since then, Tristan has donated all the proceeds from his shows to research hydrocephalus, the rare brain disease that put him in the hospital.

“So, after that surgery, I knew God had left me here for a reason,” he said. “So, I wanted to do 200% now.”

Tristan’s mother said her son’s new mission hasn’t just inspired kids going through the same hardship as him.

“He has no idea that he’s inspired our whole family. He doesn’t give up and I think to myself if he went through all this and he keeps going, I can too.”

You can listen to Tristan Ramos’ music by clicking here