Years after Montgomery teen beats cancer, dream of being a nurse comes true

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - It’s a story of courage and overcoming great odds. A Montgomery woman not only beat cancer but used it to springboard herself to something better; serving others in a noble profession.

Nine years ago, life threw Paige Kendrick a curve ball in the form of Stage 2 ovarian cancer. She was only 15-years-old.

Kendrick, a graduate of Lee High School in Montgomery and Troy University in Montgomery, said it was “a hard time” in her life.

One photo the family shared showed only a snapshot of Paige’s suffering, that dark road of surgeries, chemotherapy, needles and wondering whether she would be able to live the dream of becoming a nurse.

“Yes, I lost my hair. It had to grow back. I had to wear a wig and stuff,” Kendrick recalled.

Here we are nearly a decade later and Kendrick has not only defeated cancer but is a newly-minted nursing graduate of just a week!

“That I made it,” she explained when asked what goes through her mind looking at her nursing pin.

All that’s left to do is take the nursing exam in a few weeks. After that, Paige has a job waiting for her at one of the hospitals in the capital city.

“It feels like a victory,” she said.

In short, her life is coming full circle. The irony isn’t lost on her or her mom.

“I wholeheartedly understand, because I’ve been there before,” Kendrick explained.

“Just going through what she was going through at Children’s [Hospital], I could see it unfolding,” said her mom, Tracey Kendrick.

What a journey it’s been. Seven years ago, not long only after she recovered, the Make-A-Wish Foundation honored Paige’s request for a dream trip to Hawaii.

And now the ultimate trip; Paige is headed straight to a profession that saved her life, a life that took an unexpected detour to something deeper.

Copyright 2020 WSFA 12 News. All rights reserved.