Alex Wong/Getty Images/AFP
Alex Wong/Getty Images/AFP

Washington: Grace Eline, a 10-year-old girl who bravely battled brain tumour, won everyone’s heart when US President Donald Trump told her during the State of the Union address on Wednesday that she was an inspiration to all.

From an early age, instead of birthday gifts, Grace asked that donations be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. When Grace was 9 she was diagnosed with a brain tumour. Although she had a rare form of cancer, Grace had chemotherapy last year and “was pronounced cancer free in October.” That didn’t stop Grace from trying to help the fight against cancer.

Trump acknowledged Grace midway through his address. “Tonight, I am also asking you to join me in another fight that all Americans can get behind – the fight against childhood cancer,” said President Trump, who then introduced Grace. “Joining Melania in the gallery this evening is a very brave 10-year-old girl, Grace Eline,” Trump said. Grace, who sat next to First Lady Melania Trump, could be seen beaming from the gallery as she was met with a standing ovation and applause.

“Every birthday since she was 4, Grace asked her friends to donate to St Jude’s Children’s Hospital. She did not know that one day she might be a patient herself. “Grace recently finished chemotherapy and today shows no evidence of the disease. She is determined to help other children who are fighting cancer,” Trump said.  “When Grace completed treatment last fall, her doctors and nurses cheered with tears in their eyes as she hung up a poster that read:  “Last Day of Chemo.”

Grace – you are an inspiration to us all, he said. “Many childhood cancers have not seen new therapies in decades.  My budget will ask the Congress for USD 500 million over the next 10 years to fund this critical life-saving research,” Trump said. Last October, the American Childhood Cancer Organisation named Grace a Gold Ribbon Hero, who the organisation calls “strong and courageous” and a “generous and giving individual with a passion to help others and brighten their days.”

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