On Wednesday, ESPY Awards honored the late Lauren Hill for the ‘Best Moment’ at their 23rd annual ceremony.
As LifeNews previously reported, Lauren had a very deadly form of brain cancer known as Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG), which is a pediatric cancer found at the base of the brain. Unfortunately, less than 10% of DIPG children will live longer than 18 months from diagnosis. Doctors told Hill that she wouldn’t live to see 2015 but she proved them wrong and never stopped fighting her cancer.
Prior to Lauren’s death in April, she raised over $1.5 million for cancer research and said she felt like she was doing God’s work.
She said, “I know I will be fine. Because I feel like I’ve done God’s work, what he sent me here to do. I feel like maybe, I’m not done yet. Maybe that’s why I’m still here.”
Then, in March, Lauren appeared on the ABC talk show, The View alongside her mother, Lisa, to raise money for The Cure Starts Now Foundation. “It’s kind of hard to just focus on you and not on others. I just kept thinking about all of these other kids who have nothing else to do and their families being told that they have nothing else… and I have to be that voice,” said Lauren.
At ESPN’s award ceremony, Lauren’s mother said, “If she were here today standing on this stage, she would ask you not to sit on the bench. Please don’t wait until you’re personally affected by cancer to start kicking cancer’s butt.”
She also told USA today that she doesn’t believe Lauren would be offended that she didn’t receive the Arther Ashe Courage Award. Lisa explained, “I don’t think (Lauren) would have had a strong opinion on (the award) either way, to be honest. She was pretty down-to-earth. She respected (people from) all walks of life and people who were different. She would have never been judgmental or harsh or anything like that. That’s just not who she was.”
Earlier this year, the Daily Mail reported that people were outraged that Lauren wasn’t receiving the award, especially after her success with fundraising for cancer research. One Twitter user said, “Elective surgery isn’t courage or bravery. Fighting brain cancer with grace and dignity at 19 is. Lauren is most deserving.” Another named Josh commented, “Lauren Hill deserves the ESPY award for courage, and it should not even be a discussion. What an absolute embarrassment.”
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In a statement ESPN said the following about the Arther Ashe award: “Sometimes that courage is demonstrated over the course of a lifetime and sometimes it is demonstrated in a single act that shines a light on an important contemporary issue. At all times, there are many worthy candidates. This year, we are proud to honor Caitlyn Jenner embracing her identity and doing so in a public way to help move forward a constructive dialogue about progress and acceptance.”
Watch Lauren’s parents accept the Best Moment award on their daughter’s behalf in the video below.