PEWAUKEE, Wis. – Members of a Wisconsin community came together Friday night to stage a birthday parade for a 5-year-old girl with terminal brain cancer.
Delaney Krings and her family watched the birthday parade from their home in Pewaukee as cars rolled by, WTMJ-TV reported. There were appearances by Olaf, Elsa, Mickey Mouse and others, as Delaney celebrated her fifth — and most likely last — birthday.
“It’s amazing, and there’s so many great people out there doing so much for us,” Delaney’s father, Jack Krings, told WISN-TV. “You’re really happy to see it, but you wish it wasn’t your kid.”
“I think it’s actually just a privilege that the family invited us all to be a part of her journey and her story today,” Sandra Lomeli, who participated in the parade, told WTMJ.
On Oct. 31, Delaney was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, according to “Today.” Doctors at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin in Milwaukee said the girl had six to eight weeks to live, the news outlet reported.
Delaney’s latest surgery has also taken a toll, her mother said.
“Her vision has been quite impaired from that and that did take away from what little motion she did have in her left arm and leg,” Heather Krings told WTMJ. “We know she hears us, we know she can see. She does have to lift her eyelid up to see a little bit.”
The family’s real estate agent and close friend, Sharon Tomlinson, organized a birthday card drive, USA Today reported.
“Delaney’s not going to be around for much longer,” Tomlinson told WISN. “So having everybody come together to make this the best event possible and hopefully put a smile, not just on her face, but the family’s face.”
Cards have been pouring in from around the nation, with some even coming from abroad, Heather Krings told the newspaper. NFL star J.J. Watt, who was born in Pewaukee, tweeted an early birthday greeting on Monday.
“Happy (early) 5th Birthday Delaney!” the football player tweeted, alongside a photo of him holding a homemade card. “From Arizona back home to Pewaukee, I hope you have a fantastic birthday surrounded by family and friends!”
The celebration was bittersweet for the Krings family.
“It is kind of one little bit every day that we see taken away from her,” Heather Krings told WTMJ.
While Delaney watched the parade, her parents were watching an ominous clock.
“Hopefully, Christmas, she’ll make it,” Heather Krings told WISN.
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