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Chicago boy dies of cancer after getting hundreds of birthday cards

A Chicago boy who inspired hundreds to send him birthday cards as he battled an incurable cancer has died, reports CBS Chicago.

Relatives were worried Lucas Cervone, who they affectionately called "Bear," wouldn't live to see his 6th birthday on May 7, so they celebrated Saturday.

On Sunday, they posted on Facebook that the little boy who had been living with cancer for most of his young life had died saying, "He is cancer free and no longer in pain."

Cervone surpassed his goal of receiving 500 birthday cards -- which was shared around the world -- getting so many that the UPS Store that was holding on to them ran out of room.

Before the announcement that he had passed, Cervone's family posted a heartfelt Facebook message on Sunday about their son's final days and thanking all of those who have supported him.

We have talked to Bear about the end and it seems he understands what is to come. That has been the hardest conversation we have ever had in our lives, I think. Bear is strong and still fighting his way through but he seems to be more ready to go everyday.

Thank you all for your amazing love and support you have shown Bear and our family. This will be my last post for awhile. Please understand that we need to be with Bear now. Thank you for letting us share our son's life with you. Thank you for spreading awareness of this deadly disease. Please take care of yourselves also. Grief is a strange thing, but please do what you must to cope with all of this. Your feelings matter too.

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