Ami Brown, who was diagnosed with lung cancer, has been in remission since 2018

By Aurelie Corinthios
August 31, 2020 12:52 PM
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Credit: Bear Brown/Instagram; Inset: Frederick M. Brown/Getty

It hasn't been an easy few years for the Brown family, but Bear Brown is proud of the obstacles they've overcome.

Last week, the Alaskan Bush People star dedicated a sweet Instagram tribute to his mother Ami Brown on her 57th birthday, which comes in the wake of her cancer battle and a recent wildfire near their home in Washington State.

"Happy Birthday to my mother!!!" he wrote. "The strongest and most courageous woman I've ever known. We've had a pretty hard time the past few years, but we've also had some monumental moments! Mom has gotten the grandchildren she has always wanted!"

"I feel very blessed to still have my mother with me and that she has gotten to see the Wolfpack grow even larger with grandchildren," he continued. "Through all the adversity we've faced we still stand together as a family! Even stronger because of it!!! Happy birthday Mom!!!

Credit: Bear Brown/Instagram

Ami, a mother of seven, was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer in early 2017 after months of unexplained pain.

"I had some pain in my back," she told PEOPLE at the time. "Walking from the house to the garden, I would get winded. There were days I was just bedridden, but I just thought it was my arthritis. We were filming the show and at times it was all I could do to just stand there — I was in so much pain. When we were shooting promo shots I told them, 'There's something wrong.' In December [2016] I went to the dentist to get impressions made for new teeth and when they did a scan they noticed a little capsule. That's how this all started."

After her diagnosis, the family permanently relocated from their homestead in rural Alaska to Washington, buying a 435-acre property in the North Cascade Mountains, so that Ami could continue to receive treatment.

In January 2018, Ami confirmed to PEOPLE that she was in remission.

"I have to go in every three months now for the rest of my life and be scanned to see if it's back or not. It's going to be a part of my life forever. But I want to encourage people to enjoy every moment and walk every moment with God because he knows what it's about," she said. "Never give up faith."

Alaskan Bush People

Earlier this month, the Browns faced another scare after a wildfire broke out near their land in Washington. In a video posted on the show's Instagram account, the Brown siblings assured fans that the family was safe after being evacuated due to the "raging" Palmer Fire in Okanogan County.

Days later, Bear urged his followers on Instagram to reach out to those who had been affected by the fire.

"I would like to wish everybody well that has lost from the fire! My family and I have lost a lot, but we are not the only ones! Many people have lost [their] homes and [their] livelihood," he wrote. "Please everyone reach out to those in need with helping hands."

"But to those who have lost my heart goes out to you all! Stay strong!" he added. "It's always darkest before the dawn and God bless you all!!!"

Alaskan Bush People airs Wednesdays (8 p.m. ET) on Discovery.