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Port St. Lucie child cancer patient fosters dozens of kittens

Brieanna Elmer has fostered more than 50 kittens from no-kill shelters
Posted at 3:40 PM, Aug 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-31 18:46:34-04

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Brieanna Elmer, 14, is a two-time cancer survivor.

Her dad, Adam Elmer, remembers when their family go the news.

"We were told that it was cancer," Elmer said. "It was rhabdomyosarcoma, which is a soft tissue cancer.”

Each diagnosis left her in St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee for a year.

Recent scans showed her cancer had returned and spread throughout her body.

"We’re basically treating to slow it and prevent it from spreading as quickly as it was so she can have some quality time," Elmer said.

Time with her family and animals.

"I have an attraction to something that needs me" Brie said.

The teen said her passion for fostering, particularly kittens, helped her through each remission and relapse.

"She's definitely a nurturer, whether it's babies or kittens," Elmer said.

So far, Brie has helped foster more than 50 kittens from no-kill shelters in our area that were later adopted.

"Being able to get those animals out of a shelter and into a foster home is their best bet," Brie said.

Her hope is to inspire others to do the same.

“If I can do it, you can do it," Brie said.

"It’s been really hard for all of us because she is she’s such an amazing kid and she’s made a huge impact here as well as anywhere she goes," said Reagan Johnson, a staff member at the Humane Society of the Treasure Coast.

In the face of a daunting diagnosis, Brie’s dad said she is one teenager we can all learn from.

The lesson? Live in the moment.

Elmer said Brie is a master of it.

"When you go through something like this you almost have to live that way, you get to the point where you take everything day by day and you try to enjoy it as much you can," Elmer said.

Especially the little things

To find out more on how you can help Brie and her family cover travel and other expenses, click here.