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‘That’s a true soldier’: Rapper Drake surprises cancer survivor with $100k


By Aaron Cantrell

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    NASHVILLE, Tennessee (WTVF) — Nashville resident Lauren Schwallier’s year-long battle against breast cancer has been a rollercoaster of emotions.

Last year, two days before turning 33, Lauren received a life-altering diagnosis that shifted her world. Initially she thought the lump was due to a hormonal cyst from breastfeeding. She soon started facing both physical and emotional challenges.

“Being exhausted, sleeping all the time, not being fully present – it’s been tough,” shares Lauren, reflecting on moments that felt like hitting rock bottom.

Amid the hardships, Lauren decided to flip the switch on her outlook. She chronicled her journey on social media, sharing a video depicting her transformation from having no hair to proudly displaying a full head of hair.

For Lauren, this became a beacon of positivity, a message of hope for others dealing with similar struggles.

She completed her last round of chemotherapy in January, which was huge relief — and then Lauren faced another unexpected twist.

While undergoing bone and CT scans on Feb. 7, a friend surprised her with tickets to a Drake concert at Bridgestone Arena, knowing Lauren’s love for music and concerts.

“Music is my favorite, and concerts are my happy place, so I was ready to go celebrate and have a good night. I saw him in 2018 and he puts on the best show. I was like, ‘next time he comes I’m going to be down on that floor,'” Lauren explained.

During the concert, the Grammy-winning rapper addressed the crowd, encouraging them to take a moment to brighten someone else’s day. Lauren the unveiled a sign that read, “Just finished chemo, and on the other side, no mo chemo.” Strangers in the audience illuminated her sign with their cell phone lights, catching Drake’s attention.

In response, Drake declared Lauren a true soldier and surprised her with a generous gift: $100,000.

When Lauren started her cancer journey, she didn’t know Drake’s gift was a part of what she calls God’s Plan.

“Without almost any hesitation, he was just so gracious, and it goes to show that God is working through him,” reflects Lauren.

Though she felt like she was starting from the bottom, Lauren is now here, using her journey to inspire others.

“Drake helping me really makes me want to give back more,” she says, expressing her gratitude.

Lauren still can’t believe one her favorite artists helped her in this way.

“I’m forever grateful,” Lauren said.

She faces potentially more surgeries and will have to take medication moving forward.

Lauren has already been in talks with Drake’s team about the money. She plans to pay off a lot of her medical debt, and put some money away for her two-year-old daughter.

She credits her husband, friends, and family from Michigan for giving her the strength to keep fighting.

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Article Topic Follows: CNN - Regional

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