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To Cecilia, every day is a new adventure. She loves travelling, trying new things, meeting new people and being spontaneous more than anything. Ever the ambitious type, when Cecilia sets her mind to something, she doesn't give it up and fights for what she believes in. She’s moved around a lot, which has taught her many things and helped her become the person she is today.
When Cecilia was 2 years old, she developed a cough and started experiencing a lot of pain in her legs. Her parents took her to the doctor, who said it was a virus. But when Cecilia didn't get better, she returned to the doctor. This time, they ran some blood tests and Cecilia was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Cecilia underwent two years of extensive chemotherapy treatment. With the help of her doctors and a lot of emotional support, she entered remission. Today, she is 18 years old.
“I was very young when I was diagnosed,” said Cecilia, “and to be honest I remember more of the aftermath and the constant checkups then the actual journey. But I would like to tell others to stay strong and keep fighting. I know that's what everyone says, but it's true. There will be hard times when you will start to lose hope and that's when you need to keep your head up the most. What comes after is the greatest part and they should never give up.”
All heroes have heroes of their own, and for Cecilia, that is her dad. He is also a cancer survivor, and the strongest person Cecilia knows. He has always shown Cecilia what kindness and hard work are and inspires her to be a better person every day.
Cecilia hopes to one day start her own family, and cannot wait to give them as much love and support as her family has given her. She hopes to travel the world and open her own boutique hotel.
When Cecilia was younger, she had a personal experience with family friends holding a lemonade stand in her honor with Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF). To Cecilia, ALSF breathes life into her greatest hope of all - that a cure is found. She is glad ALSF exists to give emotional support to all the families and children going through a hard time.
Hero quote: “Every day is a whole new adventure, and you never know when it's gonna be your last. So I try to live to the fullest and be the best person I can be.” - Cecilia
Information provided by Cecilia Fernandez
Updated September 2021
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