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Grace Kight, Emme Nees and Sydney McMahan at Fight Like A Girl Rainbow Run

 

Fight Like A Girl Rainbow Run benefiting TeamConnor Childhood Cancer Foundation honored three Hidden Lakes Elementary School heroes who are battling cancer. On June 7, the Keller High School football stadium was transformed into a world of pink, purple and teal to honor 1st grader Emme Nees, 3rd grader Sydney McMahan and 4th grader Grace Kight. 

More than 835 participants including faculty, students and parents, helped raise more than $30,000 to honor the three girls.  One in 300 children will be diagnosed with cancer by the time they are 20 years old, but having three children with cancer at the same elementary school is rare.  Emme Nees has been diagnosed with AML, acute myelogenous leukemia, Sydney McMahan has gliomas astrocytomas brain tumors and Grace Kight is battling Ewing’s sarcoma. 

Sponsors for the Fight Light A Girl Rainbow Run included Coldwell Banker Southlake Residential Brokerage, Haltom’s Jewelers, Primrose Schools of Hidden Lakes, Drees Custom Homes, Medieval Times and GE Capital. 

All three girls were able to attend the event and were treated like royalty among the cheering and doting crowd.  Emme Nees who just completed first grade attended the event with her family and is currently undergoing chemotherapy for leukemia.  Emme, known for her big smile, has down syndrome, which makes her more susceptible to some forms of cancer. 

Third grader Sydney McMahan has had a year and a half full of challenges.  Midway through second grade, doctors found a large tumor on Sydney’s brain stem.  After going through her first brain surgery, Sydney had to re-learn how to walk, talk, swallow, eat and drink which was followed by several rounds of radiation and three more surgeries.  

“When you get a diagnosis that literally sucks the air out of you, you just want encouragement that there will be a tomorrow,” said Cheryl McMahan, Sydney’s mother. “It would be so easy for Sydney to be forgotten at school, but Hidden Lakes Elementary would not let her be forgotten.  Sydney just wants to be a normal 9 year old.”

Fourth grader Grace Kight, who is battling Ewing’s Sarcoma, took a break from treatment at M.D. Anderson in Houston to make an appearance at the Rainbow Run. 

“You don’t know what your child is capable of handling until you are forced to deal with it,” said Sarah Kight, Grace’s mother.  “There is absolutely no way we could get through this battle without hundreds of people praying for us.”

TeamConnor hosts several events throughout the year to raise funds for childhood cancer research, including Splash Out Childhood Cancer July 11 at Hawaiian Falls The Colony; Cure Cancer Jam September 13; National Childhood Cancer Awareness Prayer Vigil and Concert September 20; Color Me Green 5K and Caterpillar Dash October 4; and Northwestern Mutual Clay Shoot November 6.  In addition, TeamConnor’s national Coins for Kids with Cancer® program raises funds in schools, churches, offices and organizations to help fund childhood cancer research.

Worldwide, a child is diagnosed with cancer every three minutes. In the United States, cancer kills more children every year than AIDS, asthma, diabetes, cystic fibrosis and congenital anomalies combined. Yet, the National Cancer Institute allocates less than four percent of its funds to pediatric cancer research. TeamConnor Childhood Cancer Foundation is dedicated to serving families, building awareness, and raising funds for research to help cure childhood cancer.

For more information on how to impact the lives of those affected by childhood cancer please visit teamconnor.org or find us at Facebook.com/TeamConnor.