Embodiment of strength and perseverance through adversity

Chickasaw youth Rachel Scott was just like any regular 12 year old. She enjoyed cheerleading and basketball, loved to paint and spend time with her family and friends. But her life changed one day during a shopping trip with her mom. Suddenly she became so weak and dizzy that she had to sit down in the middle of the store aisle. Knowing something was seriously wrong, they made an appointment with the doctor. Their worst fears were realized with a diagnosis that no one wants to hear. Rachel had childhood leukemia.

The treatment regimen was difficult, often making her feel even more sick. There were hospitalizations and at times she was confined to a wheelchair. But she never complained and was a pillar of strength for herself and her family. While in the hospital, Rachel would watch as other children finished their treatment and rang the bell to mark the occasion as the staff cheered them on. Inspired by her fellow patients, she knew that one day she too would also ring the bell, marking the end of one chapter and the beginning of a new one.

Now a cancer survivor, Rachel says that she believes her cancer journey was a part of God's plan. She knew that she could get through it because she had the Lord and He would help her stay strong. Her experience has inspired her to become a pediatrician and an advocate for children battling cancer.