Two teenage best friends had a plan to go to homecoming together, until cancer got in the way.
Kaitlin O’Connor and Blake Mounts from Hilliard, OH, were deciding how to attend their senior homecoming together.
“The plan was for [Blake] to be able to leave the hospital for an hour or two on the night of our homecoming to attend the dance,” O’Connor told Yahoo Style. “But after getting news of the severity of the cancer, that was no longer an option.”
Mounts, who was recently diagnosed with a rare form of acute myeloid leukemia, discovered his intense cancer treatments were going to keep him from attending homecoming.
O’Connor and Mounts were both disappointed by the news – but O’Connor was not defeated.
“Blake’s sister, Taylor, and I thought, ‘Well, if he can’t go to homecoming, then homecoming is coming to him,’” O’Connor said to Yahoo Style.
But, the two had to act fast.
“Since chemotherapy starts to affect a person very quickly, the nurses said the homecoming had to be within the next five days, so Taylor and I got to work,” O’Connor shares.
O’Connor and Mounts’ sister decorated a room at the children’s hospital and invited all of the teen’s closest friends and family. O’Connor made up a sign to present to Mounts, officially asking him to the dance, and his family helped picked out a formal outfit for Mounts to wear. They also bought a corsage and boutonniere to complete the feel.
Before O’Connor went in to surprise her bestie, Mounts text her asking if she was coming.
“I told him I wasn’t able to make it,” O’Connor said, “which upset him a little, but I’m pretty sure I made up for that!”
Seconds after she sent her text, O’Connor walked into the room dressed in her homecoming dress and her hair curled.
“We presented him with the outfit we picked out and told him to get dressed. He smiled and asked, ‘Wait, right now?’ He was so confused, but I could tell he was so happy.”
After Mounts got dressed, the pair headed down the hall to the official homecoming room – where Mounts was shocked and excited to see all his friends.
“Seeing the smile on blakes(sic) face tonight was so worth all the effort put into making it happen,” O’Connor posted on her Twitter.
The couple took pictures in their formal attire in front of a sign that said, “F*** Cancer Homecoming.” Because of his weak immune system, Mounts had to wear a surgical mask over his face, but that didn’t ruin the mood.
“It was the first time since he was in the hospital that he wasn’t hooked up to any wires or IVs. I think that’s when the most tears were shed by the guests and myself,” O’Connor said.
Since O’Connor’s posted about the soiree on Twitter, more than 17,000 people have liked it and have responded with encouraging messages about the kind gesture.
O’Connor, who also set up a GoFundMe page for Mounts’ medical bills, said she did it because, “I just want Blake to know how loved he is, because he’s such an amazing friend.”
Mounts will be in the hospital for at least four months, where he will received two rounds of chemotherapy and a bone marrow transplant, Yahoo Style reports.