High School Freshman Invites Young Sister with Terminal Cancer to Formal Dance

March 11, 2016 1:41 pm Last Updated: March 11, 2016 2:46 pm

A high school freshman was praised for taking his 10-year-old sister who has terminal cancer to his first formal dance.

A.J. Spader, the freshman, took his sister, Rebekah Spader, to the dance. The South Dakota girl was diagnosed with the terminal illness about four years ago.

It really made my mama-heart happy to know that we’ve raised a son that would do something so selfless.
— Stephanie Spader, mother

Mom Stephanie Spader, who has five kids, told Inside Edition that she’s not sure how long her daughter will live. However, she thinks the 10-year-old won’t live to see her first dance. “So I just thought ‘Why not ask her to [my] formal?'” A.J. Spader told KSFY.

“It was all his idea. It really made my mama-heart happy to know that we’ve raised a son that would do something so selfless,” his mother told the website a few weeks ago.

(Facebook/Tony Spader)
(Facebook/Tony Spader)

A.J. organized an elaborate proposal to give her the full experience.

“I would be broken if you weren’t my sister because you taught me how to be brave, and I would be blessed if you went to formal with me,” he told her, per Inside Edition.

He included their family motto, “Broken, brave, blessed,” which they adopted when Rebekah was diagnosed with cancer.

(Facebook/Tony Spader)
(Facebook/Tony Spader)

At age six, she was diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome, which is a potentially terminal form of bone marrow cancer.

“It’s fun to watch her live part of life where the disease doesn’t creep in,” her father Tony Spader told KSFY. “She is just excited to be doing something that every child and every teenager gets to do.”

(H/T – Upliftingforever)