Karen Sharp

Karen Sharp

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Dream Prom For Two Bone Cancer Survivors

It was a dream prom came true for high school students, Vivian Eagle and Cade Thompson.

But it almost never happened because both students were battling bone cancer.

Eagle and Thompson are from Indianapolis but were enrolled at separate schools. They shared a unique experience, as both of them were diagnosed with osteosarcoma in nearly the exact same place in their legs. 

Thompson, 18, was diagnosed in 2020, while Eagle, 17, received her diagnosis last year. The pair met through Eagle’s mother, Katrina, who teaches at Thompson’s school and connected them after her daughter’s diagnosis. 

The teens then bonded over their health journeys together, which culminated in an unforgettable prom night. 

“[Prom] was really magical and it just made me happy,” Thompson told NBC News. “I knew immediately when we had the opportunity to meet the Eagle family that that was our why.” 
Eagle agreed, saying meeting Thompson gave her hope when she was in the depths of her illness. 
“I just can’t thank them enough,” the volleyball player added. 
“We had a connection that words can’t explain because of what we went through,” he said.

Eagle received her diagnosis in 2022 after noticing a painful bump in her left leg. That's when a doctor found the 5-inch tumor that left her unable to walk.

“My heart dropped,” the teen recalled to IndyStar. “I was like, ‘What? Cancer? And what about volleyball?’ I had just gotten to play in my first tournament and then I got the diagnosis.” 

Thompson was diagnosed about 18 months earlier, in July 2020 when he had trouble running during football practice. What he thought was a weak knee turned out to be a tumor in his left leg. 

Even though neither will be able to continue their sports career, they're grateful to have a second shot at life and have each other to talk to during their shared health experience.

“[Thompson] was always there when nobody else was. There was a time, especially after surgery, I was at my lowest point. He knew why,” Eagle said elsewhere in the interview. 
“There’s not a lot of people in the world anymore that are just always there,” she continued. “Through thick and thin, and Cade you were there for me.” 

Thompson is two years in remission since this past April and Eagle completed her chemo treatment last October.

The pair said they will remain “friends forever” despite Thompson leaving for New York after he graduates. But they now have their prom photos and memories to celebrate their forever bond. 

According to the American Cancer Society, osteosarcoma is the most common type of cancer that starts in the bones. In children, teens and young adults, osteosarcoma usually starts in areas where the bone is growing quickly, such as near the ends of the arm or leg bones. 

Source: NY Post

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