#TaylorMeetAnna: Leukemia Patient Hopes to Meet Taylor Swift
A West Roxbury girl that was recently diagnosed with leukemia is hoping that pop-singer Taylor Swift has some time to spare during her visit to Massachusetts this weekend to stop in and see her at the hospital.
Kris Jerome, whose daughter Anna found out she had leukemia on July 8, said the family had bought pre-sale tickets to go see Swift during her performance at Gillete Stadium this weekend, but was forced to give those tickets to a friend because Anna is bedridden after her recent diagnosis. “It’s overwhelming,” said Jerome, from a hospital room on Saturday morning. “My daughter probably won’t be able to leave the hospital for the next six months. She has a long road ahead of her.”
Anna, 14, a student at Boston Latin, was with her family on a trip two weeks ago when her throat started to feel sore, her mother said. When the family returned from their trip, they went to a doctor to get a throat culture. After the test came up negative for strep throat, they thought maybe Anna had mononucleosis, but that, too, was inconclusive.
Days later, Anna was diagnosed with leukemia, and has been at Boston Children’s Hospital ever since.
Jerome said to help lift her spirits, since she will miss her favorite performer on stage, Anna’s friends took to social media to try and grab the attention of the Grammy-winning artist, in hopes that if they got enough Tweets trending using the hashtag #TaylorMeetAnna, Swift might be persuaded to come to Boston to say hello to her self-proclaimed “biggest fan.”
“She would absolutely love Taylor to stop by,” said Jerome, adding that Anna was a little shy about all of the attention on her behalf, given her recent diagnosis.
But her friends were not the only ones to join in on the attempt to get Swift to come from Gillette Stadium to Children’s Hospital for a quick visit with Anna.
Even Mayor Tom Menino, and City Councilor Matt O’Malley joined in, asking Swift to “pop in” for a visit. Menino’s plea received more than 250 retweets after being sent out on Friday:
— Mayor Tom Menino (@mayortommenino) July 26, 2013
— Matt O'Malley (@MattOMalley) July 27, 2013
Anna’s mother said she didn’t know how much good the social media campaign to make her daughter’s dream come true would do, but she was hopeful that the singer has seen some of the efforts started by Anna’s friends, and will be able to schedule some time to make a visit. “If someone could persuade Taylor Swift to come down here and walk through the door, that would be wonderful,” she said.
It wouldn’t be the first time Swift met with a fan recently diagnosed with leukemia. On July 18, an 11-year-old girl from Pennsylvania got a VIP pass to meet with the star backstage. However, Anna’s story is slightly different, because she is unable to leave her hospital bed. “We haven’t heard from her, I hope she appreciates where Anna is coming from,” said Jerome.