In one of the most empowering moments captured on video, a young woman diagnosed with cancer braves a massive crowd and goes on stage alongside Kenny Chesney – without her wig!
22-year-old Alicia Porack was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in April of 2016 and had just gone through a chemo session two days prior to the concert. Additionally, Porack had shaved her head for the first time.
Hesitant to attend the Kenny Chesney concert she and her friends had already gotten tickets for, one of her friends brought up the notion of holding a sign in hopes that the singer would see it and bring her on stage for an incredible moment.
Talking to WGRZ Channel 2, Porack talked about her reaction to the sign idea.
“My friend Taylor was like ‘We need to make you a sign. We want to get you on stage. Kenny Chesney brings people on stage all the time’ and I was like, ‘No, no, no I don’t want to do that. It’s fine. I just want to go watch the concert…'”
While she may not have wanted to have the sign, her friends decided to surprise her with it and made one anyway. They snuck it in under a tee shirt so Porack wouldn’t spot it.
Once inside, they held the sign as high as they could in hopes that Chesney would see its message: “Beatin’ Cancer”.
To their great surprise and excitement, he spotted the sign and welcomed Porack to the stage following his encore. Right before Chesney brought her up on stage, she pulled off her wig in what she calls one of the most empowering moments she’s ever had.
“That moment where I took it off and went on stage in front of all those people, it was one of the most empowering moments that I’ve ever had. It was almost just like I don’t care what people think of me,” She recalled. “What do I have to hide at this point? So it was, for as hard as it was, it was so empowering and it was, I’m very, very happy that I did it.”
— Kelly Dudzik (@kellydudzikWGRZ) September 29, 2016
Not only did she charge forward with this brave and truly impressive moment of empowerment, Chesney also had some sweet words for the young woman.
“He came over and pulled me up and…it was unbelievable,” She says, still reeling with astonishment. “He basically [said] ‘You’re beautiful. You’re going to be okay. Everything’s going to be okay. Just keep doing what you’re doing. You’re a strong girl.’ I got offstage and everyone around me was crying and it was just amazing.”
Watch Alicia’s story in the video below and if you’d like to support her on her journey – her friends have established a GoFundMe page to help with medical expenses.