[media-credit name=”Kenzie Ruston” align=”alignright” width=”300″][/media-credit]Mooresville, NC – For the first time in twenty-year-old Kenzie Ruston’s racing career she was faced with the opportunity to make a dream come true for a very special little girl and that’s exactly what she did.
Teressa Harp is a twelve-year-old little girl from Oklahoma that is fighting her second round of Rhabdomyosarcoma, which is a cancerous tumor of the muscles that are attached to the bones. Teressa was first diagnosed in September 2010 and after a year of grueling chemo, radiation, and brain surgery, the cancer has returned and the survival rate is now next to zero.
Once Ruston found out about Teressa’s wish to watch her race, the Team-along with the help of Cruise 4 Cancer Foundation and the staff at Anderson Speedway (IN)-began to put the plan together to put a smile on this little courageous girl’s face.
“We knew right away that we needed to put something together that would allow Teressa to come to Anderson to watch my first race of the season.” said Ruston. “With the help of Theresa Coffman and Rita Presley with Cruise 4 Cancer, and Rick Dawson and his great staff at Anderson Speedway, we were able to make the weekend an unforgettable experience for her and her family.”
Teressa, her sister and grandmother got a once in a lifetime experience this weekend in Anderson, Indiana. It all started with a private ride from the airport to their Holiday Inn hotel where she got to meet Kenzie and her team and share some smiles and laughs.
“Teressa’s courage and strength is such an inspiration to me and my team. The smile on her face this whole weekend was priceless and I am very happy that we were able to provide her with that.”
Teressa was then treated to a meal at Montana Mike’s Steakhouse and Culver’s Eatery complements of the Anderson Speedway staff and the restaurant managers before heading to get her pedicure and manicure in Kenzie blue.
As if the trip wasn’t great enough, the twelve-year-old got to experience life in the fast lane at the beautiful Anderson Speedway. First, race track president, Rick Dawson, introduced Teressa as the official grand marshal for the event before handing her an autographed checkered flag that was signed by every driver in attendance. She was treated like a VIP on race day and also gave the command for the drivers to fire their engines.
“Hearing Teressa’s voice say ‘fire your engines’ was pure motivation for myself,” stated Ruston. “We didn’t qualify as good as we would of liked to, but thinking of her smile and the situation she is faced with reminded me that no matter where I started for the race, I was still able to live my dream and that together everyone made this little girl have a smile on her face that isn’t going away anytime soon.”
Once the green flag dropped for the feature event Kenzie managed to miss several wrecks and work her way past 14 cars to finish 11th in the season opener. Although the driver and team would have liked to have brought home a better finish, the mood quickly changed as Teressa was the first one to tell Kenzie that she was proud of her efforts and she did a great job.
“We had a solid finish, would have liked to finish inside the top 10, but looking at the big picture our team is happy with the result but most importantly our lives were touched today and that’s what really matters. Teressa gives us all hope, faith, and courage and with her on our team we can accomplish anything and even on the bad days we will think about her fight and how she has stayed strong through it all.”
For more information on Teressa Harp please contact Cruise 4 Cancer on Facebook or (405) 905-WISH. For more information on Kenzie Ruston please visit GoKenzie.com