Miss Rhode Island 2013 Jessica Marfeo’s story is so amazing – we couldn’t do it justice by posting a link to it. So – here it is instead – and completely worth the read!
From the Hasbro Children’s Hospital website…
“When she was five years old, Jessica was diagnosed with pneumonia. During her treatment at Hasbro Children’s Hospital, Jessica had an x-ray that revealed a lesion behind her lung tissue. Jessica’s medical team here, including accomplished pediatric surgeon Dr. Arlet Kurkchubasche — the children call her “Dr. K” — hoped and prayed that the spot was just a ganglioneuroma, an uncommon but benign growth. But Dr. K. also worried that the lesion might be something far more dangerous…and she was right. Jessica had neuroblastoma, a rare form of pediatric cancer usually found in the abdomen…and usually found in children much younger than Jessica.
Dr. K urged the child’s shocked parents to let her perform surgery right away. She knew that in the hands of a highly skilled surgeon, Jessica could be cured with surgery, sparing her the lifelong side effects of chemotherapy and radiation. Again, Dr. K was spot on. Jessica needed only one surgery. She was back home in Exeter soon after, and her Hasbro Children’s Hospital doctors followed her closely for 10 years. The cancer never returned.
Now 20, Jessica is a lovely young woman who truly has her whole life ahead of her. In fact, you might recognize her: Jessica recently was crowned Miss Rhode Island. She competed at the national Miss America Competition, where she was recognized as a finalist for two awards and earned scholarships to pay for college and graduate school.
“Hasbro Children’s Hospital gave me my life back,” Jessica says. Determined to pay the gift forward, Jessica volunteers as a counselor where she once was a camper, Camp Dotty, a summer program for children with cancer and their siblings at Hasbro Children’s Hospital. She also volunteers in the Tomorrow Fund Clinic, where our cancer patients are treated.
Today, Jessica is at URI studying to become a physician assistant, hoping to give her patients the caliber of care she received at Hasbro Children’s Hospital. Her ultimate goal is to become the director of the Rhode Island Department of Health. Beautiful.”
Beautiful Indeed. No wonder she was named the 2nd runner up for the Miss America Quality of Life award. Excellent work, Miss RI 2013 🙂
Who will follow in Jessica’s footsteps?
Junkies Say Here’s Who to Watch:
Ivy Depew – 1st runner up ’13, semi-finalist in TN
Alexandra Curtis – NAM Teen RI and National Winner ’11
Victoria Cuartas – 2nd runner up ’13
Amara Berry – would be the first open lesbian to compete at Miss America
Nicollette Peloquin – Miss Teen New England ’12, MA Teen USA Top 15 ’12 and ’14
GOOD LUCK TO ALL!!! WHOOOOOOO HOOOOOOOOO!!!! 🙂