TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Dozens of volunteers came together in Tampa to build a playground for a 5-year-old cancer patient on Thursday.
Roc Solid, along with Winn-Dixie and Gwaltney, helped build Haley Murillo her very own playset. They spent Thursday morning building it in the parking lot of the Hyde Park Winn-Dixie in Tampa.
Haley Murillo and her family have experienced a grueling journey since she was diagnosed with Wilms Tumor, a type of pediatric cancer. Her childhood has been an emotional rollercoaster consumed by doctor appointments and debilitating treatments. Still, her family said she continues to smile and keeps fighting.
“She’s a very, very strong kid and has been able to just endure with the help of God,” her mom, Delia Murillo, said. “For me, it means so much because the process of Haley’s sickness has been very hard.”
Haley’s cannot use public playgrounds like other kids due to the nature of her cancer diagnosis. But little did she know, there are people out there who bring a private playground to you.
“We believe play defeats cancer because when the child sees that playset in their backyard, the last thing they’re thinking about is cancer,” said Janet Dobson, volunteer with Roc Solid Foundation, a nonprofit that donates playsets to children across the nation who have been diagnosed with pediatric cancer.
After a few hours of work from dozens of volunteers, they were ready to reveal the playset to an unsuspecting Haley. They showered her with confetti and balloons before revealing the playground that will later be transferred to her house. A moment of happiness in what has been a heartbreaking journey.
“She’s going to be the happiest kid,” Delia said.
Delia also said the playset will add a dose of normalcy to their lives and help her daughter create beautiful memories as she continues to fight to defeat cancer.