Metro Teen Living With Rare Disease Gets A Special Surprise
BETHANY, Oklahoma - A metro teenager dealing with a lot of medical issues gets to celebrate a special moment, thanks to a big surprise at the Children's Center in Bethany.
This is a girl described by her family as an inspiration. For high schoolers, your senior prom is somewhat of a millstone event. Mary Sancak returned to The Children's Center, but this time not as a patient, but as a prom guest to experience a moment of a lifetime.
You would never look at Mary and know there were times doctors didn't know if she would make it. She has a rare disease that affects her liver and kidneys called Alagille Syndrome. She had her first stroke at only 2-years-old, another at age four, and has had two heart surgeries. But, her family says her recovery so far is remarkable.
On this day though, her illness isn't the focus. She gets inside a specially outfitted limousine, one of only two in the country. It was the first time she had been inside a limo.
As Mary leaves her home in Norman, she has no idea what's in store for her. But first, it's hair, makeup, the whole nine-yards before the big party.
Prom, Mary says, just the word makes her happy. But she never expected this. OU cheerleaders, OKC Thunder girls, all her family and friends in one room for a special time she thought she'd never experience.
Her surprise prom date, former OU offensive lineman, Bronson Irwin.
“These kinds of events give Mary and all these other kids an opportunity to just enjoy life and not limit themselves,” said Sara Sancak, Mary's sister.
And to top it all off, Mary is crowned the prom princess.
“I don't want her to feel like she's limited to just a few things in life, and really just experience everything,” said Sancak.
Sara sees her baby sister as an inspiration.
“She's so strong, and I really look up to her,” said Sancak.
Mary will have to wear a back brace for another five weeks.
Sara, currently studying at OU, says her sister has inspired her to go into the medical field so she can help kids with Alagille Syndrome.