ROANOKE, Va. – Prom is a significant event for many teenagers, but 14-year-old Alyssa may not live long enough to experience it.
Alyssa’s family says she may have just weeks left to live because of pancreatic cancer.
“We never expect our kids to die, especially being that young going through this and missing out on so many things,” said Rodeo Grande owner Melissa Sage.
Sage found Alyssa’s GoFundMe, which has raised more than $8,000, and decided to take matters into her own hands. Within a week, Sage organized a prom for Alyssa on Center in the Square’s rooftop this Saturday.
“She lost a lot of her childhood," Sage said. "She was not able to be able to go to prom and have one, and everyone deserves to have a prom.”
Non-profit organization Sisters of Change also helped put together Alyssa’s prom. Before long, 15 businesses signed up to make Alyssa’s night special.
“Since Thursday, we have been able to secure a limousine, a red carpet, florists, photography, and makeup,” said Sisters of Change CEO Jojo Friday.
Alyssa has even picked put a prom dress for the occasion.
“Her face is just beaming in the picture," said Sisters of Change’s Alicia Enquist. "She’s gorgeous.”
According to the family’s GoFundMe page, Alyssa is currently receiving hospice care. Because of that, Sage and Friday say it’s even more important to make her prom as good as it can be.
“I just want everything to be perfect and I want everything to be right for her,” said Sage.
“It’s a celebration of life, so let’s help her be a kid,” added Friday.
Alyssa’s prom is Saturday evening from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. All are welcome, but you must dress as nicely as you would for any other prom.