A Cinderella Story In The Midst Of The March Madness

The opening rounds have played themselves out and no one can lay claim to winning a billion dollars for a perfect bracket. In the midst of all the competition, the highlights, and the heartbreaks a story bubbles to the surface which illustrates how the game of life, when played well, creates a MVP in the most unlikely of situations.

Adreian and Lacey

Meet Cinderella: Actually the Cinderella of this story Lacey Holsworth, aka @adorableLacey as she is known by her 12,000 Twitter followers. Lacey is a vivacious 8 year old girl who loves Michigan State basketball and is battling neuroblastoma, an aggressive form of childhood cancer that has threatened her life for nearly two years. 

Meet Superman: Adreian Payne, aka Superman, the name Lacey reserved for her favorite MSU basketball player. Adreian felt a special connection to Lacey the first time they met. And as young man who lost his mother at the age of 13, Adreian knew first-hand how precious life truly is.

Their Story

As fate would have it Lacey’s and Adreian’s paths intersected when Michigan State basketball players paid a visit to a local Lansing hospital. As the team was leaving Lacey asked Adreian if he could stay a little longer. Lacey liked his smile and Adreian, no stranger to overcoming adversity, was drawn to her spirit. As Adreian stayed in contact with Lacey after his visit and throughout her treatment a friendship formed between the big man and his “lil sis”.

For those of you who would like to learn about Adreian’s story, click this link where the Bleacher Report chronicles his life and the obstacles he overcame to be both star and role model. As for Lacey’s story, I believe she and her family tell it best in this video.

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Rarely in life do we see a connection, a bond, a friendship so genuine where the life lessons being taught benefit not only those represented in the story, but all those who come to know the story.

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She taught me to fight through everything I face and reminded me to smile even when things were going wrong. 

Neither Lacey nor Adreian know what the future may hold, but one thing they do know, regardless of the circumstances, they will have each other to face whatever may come.

If you have been touched by this story and want to join Lacey’s #KissItCancer team visit Lacey’s Give Forward page to learn how you can help offset some of medical expenses associated with her treatment.

Stay strong Lacey and Go Spartans Adreian! 


trusting God period!

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Photo credit: Adreian Payne twitter feed. Video credit: Big Ten Network and Deb Boulac via Vimeo.

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