RICHMOND (WTVR) – She is still learning how to spell her name, but 4 year old Lauryn Lewis had to sign it on a very special piece of paper Friday afternoon at VCU.
The Rams presented her with a letter of intent to play for their field hockey team. She will be eligible when she enters school in 2028.
Lauryn isn’t a prodigy in the sport, and the signing was ceremonial. But she was diagnosed with a rare form of Lymphoma 9 months ago, and with the help of TeamImpact, she and her family got the full star recruit treatment from the staff and current field hockey team at VCU. It was a much needed respite in what has been a year of challenges for the Lewis family.
“We really appreciate the VCU family reaching out to us” said Elisa Lewis, Lauryn’s mom. “We are monitoring her progress and taking every day as it comes”.
Lauryn completed six cycles of chemotherapy in March, and Elisa says her immune system is starting to rebound. But the family is a recent transplant to the Richmond area, and has no other relatives close by for support. They have been overwhelmed by the support of the RVA community and people they have only recently met as their entire family helps Lauryn fight this disease.
Her new teammates got to know her through a quick Q&A session after her signing. Her favorite food is pizza, favorite colors are pink and purple, and she loves the movie “Frozen.” She has never played field hockey, but they reached out to the family after finding out about Lauryn’s diagnosis.
“We definitely wanted a team of female role models to encourage her” Elisa said. “We got the call and were very excited about it”.
“It’s been the best 15 minutes of my day” said VCU Athletic Director Ed McLaughlin. “You really can’t put a number on how this impacts our staff, our VCU family and the Lewis family. We are so thankful they are a part of us now.”