McKenna Gets Her Wish

CARSON CITY, Nev. -- High school can be a difficult transition for many teens, but when you are also battling cancer, it's an entirely new struggle. After a year of cancer treatment, McKenna Mitchell finally gets her wish.

"It's pretty amazing to accomplish that...not many people can do it," McKenna Mitchell said.

Sixteen-year-old McKenna Mitchell didn't get the typical high school experience. She missed her first day of freshman year and accumulated 38 absences last year.

"You kind of like get everyone staring at you because you have no hair, but that's alright," she said. "I'm bald, whatever."

She was diagnosed in June 2012 with Ewing Sarcoma, a rare form of cancer that spreads in the bones. For McKenna, the cancer grew in her small intestines.

"I had stomach aches for about two years and they got continuously worse and it just feels like someone just stabbing you in the stomach," she said.

Her father, Todd Mitchell didn't see the cancer coming.

"It's like a weight dropped on you so it felt like somebody took the wind out of you," he said. "You wish you could trade places with them."

The tumor was removed, but months of chemo therapy took a toll on her McKenna's health. The disease ha damaged her gall bladder so badly, it had to be removed.

"It was really scary," she said. "The couple of days to a week after chemo were probably the hardest because you were just sick, like nonstop; you can't keep anything down."

McKenna's best friend, Tristin Parrish was always by her side from the diagnosis to her recovery.

"It was hard because like going to school on the first day without your best friend like freshman year to high school is really hard," Parrish said.

Friends and family made the most out of the situation, but knew everything could change at a moment's notice.

"One day we can be sitting here and I can leave and go to school and I'd get a text that she's going to the hospital," Parrish said.

It was McKenna's friend, Janeka, who made nights int he hospital bearable.

"I would go into her room all the time and hang out and talk to her," she said. "I knew her for about a year. She was really the only one who knew what I went through."

Things turned for the worse and Janeka lost the battle with bone cancer.

"She was so positive. She never was really negative when it was really bad," Mitchell said.

Janeka's the one who told McKenna about the Make-A-Wish program. Janeka was unable to get her wish because she was over 18.

Before McKenna could think about her wish, she focused on getting healthy. Now, after a year of treatment, she's back on her feet and cancer free.

Finally able to be a typical teenager, she wished for a car.

"I was really excited because I didn't know what to do at first and then I realized that I needed something to drive," she said.

Now a junior at Carson High School, McKenna's wish for that car has been granted with a refurbished 1997 Toyota 4Runner courtesy of Make-A-Wish and the Reno Macy's.

Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
powered by Disqus
KOLO-TV 4850 Ampere Drive Reno, NV 89502
Copyright © 2002-2015 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 183552191 -
Gray Television, Inc.