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Nurses Sing “Let It Go” To Girl With Cancer & Have Her Giggling In Seconds.

There is something magical about the song “Let It Go” from Disney’s Frozen. Parents everywhere are forced to play it on a loop because it’s so catchy that every child wants to hear it over, and over, and over again.

Ava Grace Parnell is just like any kid when it comes to her taste in music – she can’t get enough of Queen Elsa’s signature song. Unlike other kids, Ava has used the song to help her get through chemo treatments as she battled Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.


Not long before her 2nd birthday, Ava’s mom, Candy, was taking her toddler into the pediatrician on a regular basis because she kept coming down with unexplained fevers. After some lab work, Ava was referred to Palmetto Children’s Hospital’s Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders.

The toddler was hospitalized for three straight weeks after her referral, and then endured 28 months of treatments. She spent that time in and out of the hospital for regularly scheduled chemotherapy as well as emergency trips due to continued fever and illness.


Ava got to know her care team pretty well over the years but was still uneasy when it came to treatment and procedures (who can blame the sweet girl?). The staff at Palmetto Children’s Hospital would often let her pick a movie or music to help distract her during her procedures – and she loved to pick Frozen, of course.

So, when she had to have a port in her chest removed, her clinical team not only let her play “Let It Go” they joined in and sang along with Queen Elsa.


Ava’s anesthesiologist captured the moment on video, which was shared on the hospital’s Facebook page. In it, Ava is cozied up with a Frozen blanket and is wearing a My Little Pony surgical cap. She seems completely calm as she smiles at her care team, and even sings along with them. The song truly is magical.

Watch the sweet moment in the video below, and be sure to spread the joy and share with friends.

Ava Grace Parnell

When Ava Grace Parnell was almost two, she kept getting unexplained fevers and frequently was sick.Her mother, Candy Hamil, kept taking Ava to her pediatrician in Darlington. In January 2014, a nurse practitioner there ordered lab work. When the results came back, Ava immediately was referred to the Children’s Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders at Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital.“Ava was immediately hospitalized for three weeks, said her Aunt Beejay Parnell, a registered nurse. “She was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) and her liver and spleen were involved.”Ava has had 28 months of treatment and now comes to the clinic monthly. When it came time for doctors to remove the port in Ava’s chest, the nursing team came up with a fun way to help calm Ava before the procedure.Ava loves the movie “Frozen” and especially loves the song, “Let it Go.” “She always requested that song during chemotherapy,” said Parnell. Ava’s pediatric operating room nursing team, Tracie Glisson, Scrub Tech, Megan Divine, RN, OR Circulator, and Michael Storm, CRNA, decided to sing with Ava at her bedside before the port removal procedure. Ava’s anesthesiologist, Mary “Melle” Dalton, MD, took video to capture the moment for Ava’s family.“The care at Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital has been excellent,” said Parnell. “Dr. Ron Neuberg has been our saving grace. He explained leukemia in terms families can understand. The entire staff makes us feel like family.”Today, four-year-old Ava is active in T-ball, tap, ballet and gymnastics. “She still has a compromised immune system, but she is in school and getting stronger,” said Parnell.

Posted by Palmetto Health Children's Hospital on Monday, September 19, 2016

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