July started off with a big, “SURPRISE!” for the Bishop family when PACT came to St. Christopher’s Hospital to celebrate Iliyana’s third birthday. PACT and the Bishops have been in close contact since July 2014, when Iliyana was diagnosed with a brain tumor and her family needed foster care for their dog, Princess, during Iliyana’s treatment. Though Iliyana is still undergoing chemotherapy, she was able to party like a pro when PACT brought cake, ice cream, and tons of gifts. Her upbeat spirit not only made the party tons of fun, it even brought joy to fellow patient and good friend, Christina.
Thanks to all of our wonderful supporters, Iliyana received over 200 birthday cards full songs, stories, and even silly glasses! Some especially generous individuals brought Iliyana amazing gifts, ranging from a sock monkey to a glimmer fairy play set. Both of her brothers also received gifts, which turned out to be exactly what each boy wanted! Iliyana’s older brother was ready to shoot some hoops with an indoor basketball set while her younger brother exclaimed, “How did you know the yellow Power Ranger was my favorite?”
No moment at the party, however, could top when the entire family blew out Iliyana’s birthday candles. After a year’s worth of chemotherapy and close calls during treatment, seeing Iliyana turn three was a gift in and of itself. Thanks to a little dog named Princess and social workers at the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House, PACT and the Bishops have bonded closely, and everyone in PACT’s staff is routing for Iliyana. We all wish Iliyana nothing less than happiness and puppy kisses as she enters her third year of life.