Monday, August 18, 2008

The littlest Broncos Cheerleader 

Posted by Sasha at 6:25 PM ET

Shooting Victim Gets To Be Broncos Cheerleader
By Howard Nathan
Aug 17, 2008

DENVER (CBS4) ― A victim who survived a drive-by shooting this summer says her dream has come true.

Eight-year-old Sierra was walking home with her aunt in Denver's Curtis Park neighborhood when someone fired out of a car and hit her this summer, but Saturday she became a Broncos cheerleader for a day.

Tens of thousands cheered the Broncos cheerleaders, but the loudest cheer should've have gone to Sierra. Hours before the game, Sierra was given full access to her heroes, the Broncos cheerleaders.

Sierra endured four surgeries to repair her spinal column, a lung and a rib.

Sierra was given the chance to watch cheerleaders rehearse in the rain, but it didn't bother her. As the downpour worsened, her father, Michael, wheeled her inside Invesco to meet the cheerleaders.

"I'm very happy you're here today," a cheerleader told Sierra.

One by one they chatted with her and signed their pictures on the Broncos calendar.

"I was excited, happy, to come meet the cheerleaders, all of them and get my hair done," Sierra said.

Her dad might've been just as thrilled as Sierra.

"I think this is an amazing event and an amazing opportunity, especially that she loves cheerleading so much and gets be around the beautiful cheerleaders here at the Broncos organization," Michael said.

For the Broncos, the chance to give back was a beautiful opportunity as well.

"This is the first time we've ever done anything like this," said Kelly Tilley, Director of Broncos Jr. Cheerleaders. "Just seeing Sierra's smile on her face pretty much makes me want to do this for every game."

A national company that works as an advocate for patients won the "Cheerleader for the Day" prize at an auction. It then donated it to Denver Health, the same hospital that worked to save Sierra's life.

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