Elizabeth Smith: Inspiration Award at Age 8


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Sports can help us deal with the most adverse situations we face in life. The virtues learned through sports such as courage, determination, perseverance, toughness, resiliency … are coming into play especially in the life of a special young lady who happens to be a member of my parish here in Northern Kentucky.

Eight-year-old Elizabeth Smith is a champion member of the Northern Kentucky Clippers swim team, placing first in all five heats she swam at the Mary Lou Mini Meet in February.

But five first-place finishes were more than just victories in the pool: Elizabeth was not able to swim in any meet last season. She also missed every day of school for all of first grade.


Elizabeth was diagnosed at age 6 with a rare form of cancer (Lymphoma of the bone), and she required chemotherapy every day, through a port in her chest, by mouth and directly into her spine.

Nauseous daily and having lost her hair five times in the last two years, Elizabeth remains bubbly and strong, and is an inspiration to her teammates, her classmates and her sister, Alex, 16, and her brothers, Nick, 14, and Logan, 11. Logan has even shaved his own head in support of his little sister.

Elizabeth is now at a point that she can no longer receive the chemo because her body no longer can benefit from it having received so much already.

Elizabeth’s mom, Tina, describes Elizabeth as a warrior. When Elizabeth was first diagnosed with cancer, she drew a picture of a princess in a castle. A dragon was outside the castle. Elizabeth told her mom, “I’m going to slay this dragon.”

Elizabeth Smith: A regular kid who is busy living her life, slaying dragons, inspiring us all.

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She recently was presented with a very special award. She won the "Inspiration Award" for the Greater Cincinnati Northern Kentucky Women's Sports Association. This was a huge honor and it was their 20th Annual Sports Awards Ceremony.

For more about Elizabeth’s battle, please click onthis LINK

Swimming has been therapeutic for Elizabeth and her whole family. An opportunity to focus on the goals of her sport and not on cancer …

This has also helped her brothers and sisters …

It's not just swimming … it is much MORE.

Virtue = Strength, Lou Judd 
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