9-year-olds put on lemonade stand for friend with cancer

Published: Jul. 17, 2017 at 5:39 PM CDT
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A 9-year-old girl from Stanley was diagnosed with cancer just two weeks ago; two of her friends from school are lending a helping hand to try and help with medical costs.

Sophia Sanchez, who just finished 3rd grade at Stanley-Boyd Elementary School, was diagnosed with sarcoma, a form of cancer that affects bones and tissues. Her medical bills are piling up with surgeries and treatments, so two of her classmates thought they could help out in a small, but sweet way.

“All the money that you donate goes to Sophia,” Allison Sayles and Mallory Alger, classmates and friends of Sophia, said as people walked up to their lemonade stand in Stanley for their friend.

A simple idea: $.50 for a cup of lemonade and $.50 for a sucker to raise money. And a simple motto for Sophia: “Just Keep Swimming.” It’s a saying from the children’s movie “Finding Nemo” she’ll use during her journey battling cancer.

Sophia is at the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital having a procedure done on Monday.

“It’s to help raise money for her family and for her for any treatment that she needs to get,” Allison said.

Carrie Sayles, Allison’s mom, says putting on a lemonade stand is a small reminder that the small community supports their whole family.

“So they know the community is with them through this struggle because they’re going to be running back and forth to Minnesota all the time,” Carrie said.

Sophia likely won’t be able to attend 4th grade next year because of her situation.

“I can’t imagine,” Carrie said. “One of the worst fears is the big ‘C’ word when it comes to your kids. I would never want that on anybody. At all. Just to help with some of that burden is a wonderful thing.”

Some high school football players and even some UW-Stout football coaches who were in Stanley on Monday showed up and helped out the cause.

“We’ve been best friends for so long,” Mallory said as she put her arm around Allison.

Just 2 best friends giving some love for their fellow friend.

The lemonade stand raised over $570.