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4-year-old cancer survivor named child ambassador for the Children’s Miracle Network

4-year-old cancer survivor named child ambassador for the Children’s Miracle Network

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By: Melissa Randall


A four–year–old East Greenwich girl was honored Tuesday for her bravery as she battled cancer. Now a survivor, she has been named a child ambassador for the Children’s Miracle Network and will be helping others deal with the diagnosis. Over the next year Grace Gallonio will also be meeting up with some influential people, including a United State President.

At age one Grace was diagnosed with cancer. It was the result of a rare baseball sized tumor growing internally on her spinal cord.

“The complications of that tumor unfortunately were causing an intestinal obstruction so she was really suffering,” said Dr. Christopher Muratore, a pediatric surgeon with Hasbro Children’s Hospital.

Grace required multiple surgeries and chemotherapy. She received those treatments at Hasbro Children’s and today is cancer free.

“It's hard to put into words how grateful we are but also just really the miracle that that happened, because even her oncologist wasn't sure whether she'd be able to come through it,” said Michelle LaRiviere, Grace’s mother.

“In pediatric surgery we say that the stakes are higher but the rewards are that much greater– and I think Grace sort of represents that,” said Dr. Muratore.

Grace will spend the next year highlighting the importance of cancer research, treatment and ongoing care. As Hasbro’s ambassador she'll have the opportunity to spread her message to some influential people. One person her family is especially looking forward to meeting is President Barak Obama.

“To take [Grace] down there will be incredible. I think she'll just be amazed by the Whitehouse it's self,” said LaRiviere. “She'll probably think President Obama is just another guy shaking your hand unfortunately,” she joked.

The trip to D.C. will happen this fall and Grace will be joined by all the other child ambassadors from around the country.  

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