U.S. & World News
Carolers sing to grant Pennsylvania cancer patient's wish
WEST READING, Pa -- Thousands of people gathered to sing outside the home of a Pennsylvania girl who is suffering from cancer - all to make her wish come true.
It's safe to say these are holiday carolers with heavy hearts, all here to grant a Christmas wish for little Delaney Brown, affectionately called "Laney."
"A lot of people don't even know her but through social media have been able to give her this wish. Unfortunately this could be her last Christmas and everyone wanted to make it special for her," said Deb Redcay.
The numbers were high - organizers say 6,000, possibly more than 8,000 people strolled down Chestnut Street right past the decorated family home.
Laney was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer in May.
She made a wish for her neighbors to lift their voices in holiday songs after doctors recently gave her days to live.
"Especially with this time of the year, with her birthday yesterday and Christmas next week, I can't even fathom what they're going through," said Mayor Shane Keller, West Reading.
Tens of thousands have liked her "Team Laney" Facebook page where her family post updates on her condition.
"Just the different stories her mother has posted regularly showing her strength, her courage, her humor - this is heartbreaking. All she wants is carols and we can do that," said Megan McGee.
Another wish Laney had was to meet pop star and Berks County native Taylor Swift.
Friday night, as her family celebrated her 8th birthday, Laney's wish was granted when the two had a video chat.
Laney was also recognized by the Pennsylvania State Senate and House of Representatives as an ambassador of hope and inspiration as she brings more awareness to childhood cancer.
As so many people walked by Laney's family, including her mother, Team Laney posted a picture saying "I can hear you now...love you."
It's safe to say the little girl heard more than Christmas carols - she heard prayers from the community.
"Just to put her mark on the world as she did in these 8 years is something that I think should make her family very proud," said Melanie Searfoss.
Laney's mother and father thanked the community for its overwhelming support.
Meanwhile, Laney's family is asking for privacy during this time but say they'll keep posting updates on Facebook.
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