TAMPA (FOX 13) - Lacey Dietz went from tumbling cheerleader and active teenager to cancer patient at John's Hopkins All Children's Hospital in the blink of an eye.
Lacey was diagnosed with lymphoma in May 2015 and has endured grueling treatments ever since, but her parents and doctors said she hasn't given up hope. For Lacey, cancer treatments are just something she has to do when she's not planning to go to college and become a coach or therapist.
The Children's Dream Fund heard about Lacey's perseverance and reached out. They asked her if she had one wish, what would it be? And she didn't hesitate - she wanted a puppy.
But not just any puppy; Lacey wanted a white, fluffy, small puppy with pink ears. She also hoped to find a pup that could be trained and become her service dog while away at school.
So Lacey's Dream Coordinator Sara Williams got to work searching for the perfect match. She found it in Missouri. A breeder of American Eskimo puppies, Lauraye Townsend of Cloud Walker Kennels.
After some careful coordination, Williams arranged for Lacey and her family to meet Lauraye Townsend at Tampa International Airport. With her, Townsend brought Casper, Lacey's new best friend.
Lacey's mom, Monica Dietz was there for the meeting. She thanked Williams for her hard work in getting Lacey her dream dog, adding she still couldn't believe the Children's Dream Fund had made it a reality.
Townsend said she was excited to see the 9-week-old puppy she carefully selected for Lacey grow into a friend and service dog for a girl who deserved it so much.
The Children's Dream Fund has been making dreams come true for children with life-threatening illnesses since 1981.