Monday, May 14, 2012

A Prom To Remember - Prom For Teens With Cancer

Throughout the last year, I have volunteered a  few times at Broward General/Chris Evert Children's Hospital. One of these times I brought my husband Dan with me. It was Christmas. I had went to Wal-mart and bought all the warm, fuzzy colorful socks I could find, along with puzzle books, word finds, and coloring books for the kids to brighten their holiday. I had Dan sign a bunch of Miami Dolphin pics and we were off! We don't have family in Florida, so rather than spend the holiday alone, I thought....hey, why not hit up the hospital? I had never taken Dan with me before, or Brandon and Katie Fields who I also invited to come along, so I was excited and a little nervous. I hoped that they would enjoy the visit and the children as much as I had in the past.

Well, it was a success! After going from room to room and handing out Christmas goodies, I felt like Dan had walked away from our afternoon at the hospital feeling like he had made a difference. I felt like he now understood why I hooped and hollered all the time about how great it was to spend time with the children and young adults there.

My feeling about his understanding was accurate. How do I know this? Because as soon as I told him Sara at Broward General/Chris Everts had invited us to take part in A Prom To Remember, and explained that it was a prom for teens with cancer, his eyes lite up. He jumped at the opportunity to be able to spend more time with this great bunch of kids. He couldn't wait to give back again and spend his time doing something meaningful. 

It didn't take long to become involved deeper in the project as I started to follow Valentina's blog posts. (You will see her beautiful pictures later). I was so excited I found myself inviting other players to attend the event as well, volunteering to take part in stuffing 200+ gift bags, and signing Dan and I up for hauling poles, backdrops, and banners with his truck the day before. 

We were not the only volunteers, and our work was minimal compared to that of many. There were a number of people who worked tirelessly and put in endless hours to make A Prom To Remember THE prom to remember. The Prom organized by Brandon Opre with the help of many others has, did, and will continue, to make everlasting memories for many teens battling cancer and/or battling the tolls it it can take on their young lives.

I wanted to write and talk about all the sponsors involved, how beautiful the kids looked, and what a touching event the 3rd Annual A Prom To Remember was, but I have a feeling that the pictures will do it justice. AND, if any of you are interested in reading more about all the juicy details, I posted links to a few great articles at the end of the post. 

This is by far to date the most rewarding thing that Dan or I have ever been a part of.

Ryan Baker, Davone Bess, Dan Carpenter, John Denney, and Marlon Moore were escorts on the Red Carpet for the evening.

I know some of the pics go off the page but I want them to be big to you can see them well.

This first picture was taken by Kelley Gavin - A Dolphins Photographer - This is my favorite shot of the night! 

Beautiful! Valentina and Dan.
I have had this blown up on our screen all day. I love this picture. I know it fits weird on the screen but I wanted it big. When I click on it, it gets even bigger and more beautiful.


Local Beauty Queens to escort the guys.

My husband, so there are more pics of him because he is naturally my favorite:)



Valentina getting interviewed on after the red carpet by Shireen Sandavol with Deco Drive! You Go Girl!!

Look at this Red Carpet Applause!!
Ritz-Carlton Ball Room all night!!!!! Wahoo!!
Photo Both at the Prom with Baker, and Denneys. Why? Cause it's fun. Why the weird faces? Cause we are weird. And weird is normal. :) 

Click-able Links

A Prom To Remember Website

Cute Video from the prom. Dan and I are in 0:06-0:47, Our good friend Ryan Baker is shown in 0:47-0:52, and showing off his dance skills from 1:12-1:16. Our awesome friend Sara, who we have come to know through Chris Evert Children's Hospital speaks from 0:56-1:16.

Miami Dolphins Website write up and a few more pics

Article in Sun Sentinel


  1. KAELA! You are the one that needs to be recognized and thaned! Your enthusiasm and energy is infectious! Just look at how much you did and how many people you got involved! Many thansk to all the Dolphins players and families who were involved. I cannot believe that it was only a few short years ago that Brandon Opre showed up in my office and we talked about this for the first time. He has truly created an amazing, inspiring event. Kaela - I appreciate all you are doing for the kids of our community and our hospital...-SARA HOWLEY CALLARI

    1. Sara,

      Thank you! It isn't very often that people recognize the people behind the curtains doing the grunt work. You Rock:)

      Dan and I were so honored to be a part of this unforgettable event. So special! We cannot wait for next year! Let me know when the planning begins!!

  2. Valentina told me that the one moment from prom that she will never forget is Dan walking her down the red carpet. :) Thank you for making her night so special!

    1. Valentina looked absolutely stunning! What a beauty she is. He smile is contagious! I just couldn't stop snapping pictures of her and Dan. She is a natural on the red carpet for sure!

  3. What a wonderful picture review of this fun evening. Having had a family member with cancer, I can only imagine the fun this young folks had planning, going and enjoying THEIR night. You are the best for seeing the good in helping others. Janet Johnson Cron

  4. Kaela - you are the best!!!

  5. Kaela, Kaci just showed this to me, and I have to say I got all teary! What a very special thing for you to be involved with and exactly what I would expect out of you!! That's the very kind of person you were from the time you were little and it's only grown! You are a very special person and so is Dan!! Love you,
    4-H Susan