STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — Mercedes Gleason of Wonderful Kills was belle of the ball at a “Beauty and the Beast” fundraiser to help cure for childhood cancer held on Saturday afternoon at Halt & Shop in New Springville.
Surrounded by relatives and good friends, the 4-12 months-aged survivor of blood most cancers was dressed as a mini-Belle though serving as a affected person ambassador at the Disney-themed bash to reward the Pediatrics Office of Memorial Sloan Kettering Most cancers Center.
A smiling Mercedes posed with two of her preferred costume figures, Belle and the Beast, as portion of the “Help Heal Childhood Cancer” campaign that has been sponsored by the grocery store chain for the previous 21 years. Shoppers have been asked to donate at the checkout counters.
“When we went to Sloan, we experienced this sort of a great working experience for Mercedes, and it built her total journey so a great deal much more tolerable,” mentioned her mom, also named Mercedes, explaining why the household embraced the campaign.
“It’s so essential that they have this fundraiser to increase resources so other children can have this working experience and, hopefully, stop childhood cancer.”
At initial look, a stranger would never ever guess that the vivacious 4-calendar year-outdated is a cancer survivor.
“Mercedes is really lively,” reported her mom. “She loves all things Disney, together with ‘Beauty and the Beast.’ She likes swimming, horses and unicorns.”
At present receiving residence-based instruction, Mercedes is keen to start in-human being kindergarten by the time she turns 5 in September.
“We’re incredibly energized for that,” her mom reported.
Mercedes was identified in February 2021 at age 3 with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, but later on it was identified that she had a variety of lymphoblastic lymphoma.
“When she bought identified, we were being in the method of shifting to Wonderful Kills, so it was actually a really challenging time,” her mom claimed, including that the spouse and children was buoyed a month later on by the start of Mercedes’ brother Wyatt.
“He’s been like our shining mild, holding us likely, way too,” Mercedes mentioned of Wyatt, who turned 1 in March.
Stefanie Shuman, exterior communications supervisor for Stop & Store, stated that at the grocery retailer 1 of the pillars of supplying back “is making sure that kids can lead pleased and wholesome life.”
By internet hosting this kind of situations, the supermarket chain raises income and recognition whilst also providing enjoyment for childhood most cancers survivors and their dad and mom, who facial area a lot of worries.
“A day like nowadays for Mercedes becoming with the figures from ‘Beauty and the Beast,’ acquiring food items and friends all over, it’s just something we can do to carry a smile to her facial area,” Shuman claimed.