GREENWICH, Conn. (CBSNewYork) — A 16-year-old is celebrating her stunning recovery from cancer, chemotherapy, two strokes and that’s not all.READ MORE: Father, Son Killed In Early Morning House Fire In New Jersey
As CBS 2’s Dave Carlin found out Friday, it was a night to remember and one that doctors did not think she would live to see.
“I love shopping and hanging out. I’m just a normal girl,” Nicole Graham said.
Carlin spoke with Graham, who has a guy crazy about her, just hours before their junior prom at Greenwich High.
“She’s pretty beautiful,” Federico Mato said.
Graham is one tough teenager with an incredible survival story to prove it.
At the start of the school year, she was diagnosed with leukemia and then came medical setbacks that nearly killed her on three different occasions — sepsis, two strokes, organ failure and paralysis.
Her journey back to her boyfriend, her family and her friends was documented every step of the way.
For any other patient the rehab process could have taken a year, maybe two, but not for Graham.READ MORE: THE GREAT ESCAPE: Clever Pup Facilitates Breakout From New Jersey Doggy Day Care
“She was out in two months going from unable to sit up to literally running out of the hospital.
“She’s our hero and everyone else’s hero,” said Maureen Carroll, senior physical therapist at Blythedale Children’s Hospital.
“I had so many people around me, supporting me,” Graham said.
Now the straight-A student and gifted athlete is not just back on the school’s lacrosse team, she’s the captain.
“Being back on the team is crazy,” Graham said. “Medically I feel like it was a miracle, but when people say I inspire so many, I kind of feel I just took life as it came.”
She’s being too modest, something her classmates noted as they voted her homecoming queen for a night, a rite of passage she refused to miss.
Doctors said Graham’s leukemia is considered to be in remission.
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