Girl, 7, gives dolls to cancer patients

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by Quita Culpepper and Photojournalis Erin Coker / KVUE News

kvue.com

Posted on November 12, 2012 at 7:07 PM

Updated Monday, Nov 12 at 8:41 PM

AUSTIN -- It’s a gift from the heart as a young Austin girl spreads cheer to cancer patients.

Seven-year-old Scarlett Milling spent weeks running her own lemonade stands trying to raise money for her project. And all that hard work paid off.

Jaylee Nielson, also 7, has spent time in the hospital before.

“It just wasn't that fun,” she said. The little girl was diagnosed with a brain tumor when she was 5.  After surgery, radiation and chemo, she was fine, until now.

“All her scans have been clean except this last one, they found a spot on her bone in her skull so she just had surgery on Friday,” said Kajsa Nielson, Jaylee’s mother. 

But this visit to Dell Childrens Medical Center is different, because she’ll be leaving with a new friend – an American Girl doll. “They seem real and I like them,” Jaylee said. “They have long hair.”

The American Girl dolls are a gift from 7-year-old Scarlett Milling. After her mother read her a story about young cancer patients, Scarlett decided she wanted bring smiles to sick children.

“I did three lemonade stands,” she said. 

The elementary school student also raised money online.

“I raised 25 hundred dollars,” said Scarlett.

Twenty-five little girls got their own American Girl doll, and there was enough money left over for each of their sisters as well.

“She found out the number of dolls that were needed and she started from there,” Mary Moore, Scarlett’s mother said. “We just watched her do it; we were really impressed with her initiative.”

“I think anything that can lighten their hearts a little bit even if it's an American Girl doll, is a good thing," said Dr. T.J. Milling, Scarlett’s father.

The girls were treated to an American Girl doll fashion show, then they were given dolls of their very own.

“It makes me feel very happy and blessed,” said 8-year-old Princess Gant. 

Scarlett says she's already planning her next effort to raise money. She wants to buy more of the dolls to give to girls at the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

 

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