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Utah Grizzlies' biggest fan gets to meet her favorite team

By Kathy Aiken | Posted - Feb. 26, 2010 at 10:40 p.m.


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WEST VALLEY -- For 13-year-old Ciearra Everill, it's all about the hair. Since she was a toddler, she loved her hair long and straight.

"I had really long hair that was thick and dark," she says.

Now, it's short and wavy -- and it's all about the hats.

"I like my hair short," Ciearra says. "I get more compliments, and it fits my personality."

But short hair wasn't Ciearra's plan.

"I just had a lump behind my ear that my friend noticed," she says.

That lump was diagnosed as non-Hodgkin's lymphoma -- a cancer of the lymph nodes.

"During my second treatment, I went through my hair, and it was just a big clump," Ciearra recalls.

So, out came the razor, and off went the hair.

Despite several rounds of chemotherapy, one way Ciearra got relief was by watching her favorite team: the Utah Grizzlies.

"I'd love to meet the Grizzlies! That would be awesome!," she told KSL when we visited her.

Ciearra got her wish. She also took a spin on the ice and a ride on the Zamboni. Then she met the team in the locker room.

Veronica Everill was with Ciearra at the E-Center. Watching her daughter go through cancer and chemotherapy was heartbreaking.

"It was the hardest thing I've ever done -- to see your child and know you're their protector, and you're there to make everything go away, and you have no control over that was the hardest thing I've ever done in my life," Veronica says.

This past week, Ciearra had one of the greatest days of her life: Her favorite Grizzly, Vlady Nikiforov, gave his biggest fan the puck from his very first professional goal. Ciearra couldn't hold back her emotions -- tears of joy, after so many months of uncertainty.

"It's probably a dream come true," she said. "I've always dreamt riding on the Zamboni, getting to see the locker room, and get the questions no one could really answer. It's kind of hard to put into words."

Ciearra is an honor student at Valley Jr. High Scholl. The best news of all is her cancer is in remission.

E-mail: kaiken@ksl.com

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Kathy Aiken

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