CLEVELAND – People checking into the Cleveland Clinic Cancer Center expect to get top-notch treatment. They expect to meet the nurses, doctors and therapists. But what they don’t expect, is for a fellow cancer-patient to cheer them up with songs.
That’s exactly what 9-year-old Oliviah Hall does. She’s currently being treated for Glioblastoma, an aggressive, malignant form of brain cancer.
“She just really brightens up the whole department; everyone here knows her,” said Allison Ochocki, a radiation and oncology nurse.
“I just feel like I’m singing to people and making them really happy; I just like seeing people, and it feels great singing to them,” Oliviah said.
FOX 8 followed Oliviah on the last day of her first round of treatment. She has had 33 radiation therapy sessions so far, and now doctors will monitor what happens in her brain.
After every session, Oliviah sings to other patients waiting to go into treatment. One patient, 83-year-old Diane Weiss, has gotten used to Oliviah’s songs before her own treatment.
“If she can look at things in life in spite of the problems she has and look at them in such a positive way, then the adults should also be living that way,” Diane Weiss said.
Weiss and her husband, Benjamin, say Oliviah has made the cancer treatments bearable.
“Oliviah cheers everyone up. When we’re down there, and we know that she’s there with the family, we can’t wait to see if she’s in the x-ray,” Benjamin said.
Oliviah and her dad live in Ashtabula. They drive around an hour every day for radiation treatments.
“A sick child is a parent’s worst nightmare, you know, so seeing her do so good and seeing her touch so many people’s lives…” said Bryan Brown, Oliviah’s dad.
Brown says Oliviah has always loved music, but was too shy to sing in front of other people. Then she was in the hospital for her brain surgery and she started singing.
“But just seeing her bring so much joy to everybody’s life just inspires me, the strength that she has; she’s my own personal superhero,” Brown said.
Oliviah says she just loves making people smile, especially her new friends at the Clinic’s cancer center.
“They just look so sad and I like making them happy,” Oliviah said.
Oliviah’s doctors and nurses say her positive attitude does more than uplift everyone at the hospital. They say it will help her fight and beat cancer.
“What Oliviah is going through is really, really difficult so having this bright attitude and always coming here singing to everybody can really help her get through this difficult treatment to keep this positive attitude,” said Ochocki.
Oliviah will take a break from treatment for a few weeks and her doctors will monitor what happens inside her brain.
To keep up with Oliviah’s journey you can follow her on Facebook at Team Oliviah.