There are a lot of special milestones in a person's senior year of high school — homecoming, prom, senior photos, graduation. But Blake Mounts, a senior from Hilliard, OH, was faced with the possibility of missing all of those milestones when he was recently diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia.
Not wanting him to miss out, Blake's sister, Taylor Mounts, wanted to bring the first special high school event, homecoming, to him. She got in touch with his friend, Kaitlin O’Connor, who had planned to go to homecoming with Mounts until it became clear that he wouldn't be able to leave the hospital, and came up with a plan to surprise him.
"It’s always kind of been an ongoing joke since we were little that Blake and me were gonna date — we’re just really good friends — so I thought it only fit for us to go to our senior homecoming together," O'Connor told Yahoo.
In a sweet video posted to Twitter, we can see the moment Mounts realized what was going on. O'Connor handed him a sign that said, "I’m no Kekoa Crawford, but I’d like to score a date with you to HOCO." (Kekoa Crawford is a player on Mount's favorite football team).
She, his sister, and their friend Amaya then told Mounts to get dressed, and led him down the hall to a decorated room where all of his close friends were waiting. According to the decorations on the wall, it was officially dubbed the, "F*** Cancer Homecoming."
The hospital let them use a nearby recreation room for teenagers to throw the party. "We brought our own decorations and pushed everything to the side to make a dance floor," O'Connor tells Refinery29.
In case it isn't clear from the photos, Mounts had a great time. O'Connor says his smile never left his face and even though he didn't actually leave the hospital, the night was a welcome reprieve.
"It seemed like he didn't even remember where we were," O'Connor says. "All of us kind of forgot that we were in a hospital and were just able to be normal teenagers for a few hours."
After the dance, O'Connor set up a GoFundMe page to help Mounts' mom, Shelly, with the cost of her son fighting this disease. And while Mounts certainly appreciates the outpouring of support he's gotten since his homecoming story went viral, he says there's no need to worry.
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