By Julleanna Seely

A makeover with glamorous hair, a wedding dress and photo shoot, a limo ride and seafood dinner all created a special day for a 19-year-old Seaford woman with terminal cancer.

Noelle Kuhoric, a Seaford High School graduate and a student at University of Virginia, received this special pampering on Sunday, Oct. 25 through the 4 Troy Foundation and the support of many local people and organizations.

Noelle Kuhoric, 19, is shown in a wedding dress in a limo on a special day for the terminal cancer patient.

“It was an amazing day! Her parents were so thankful and humbled,” said Christina Haynes, co-founder of the 4 Troy Foundation.

She had met Kuhoric when her son Troy Haynes was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer in early 2019. Kuhoric had reached out to the family because she was diagnosed with stage 4 small cell carcinoma at age 17 and after treatments was cancer-free for the second time.

In September, Kuhoric learned that the cancer had returned and progressed to a life-threatening stage.

“We have to do something special for her,” Haynes decided when she heard the news. “We put together a day like I would have wanted for my own child. People were so willing to donate and help, and it came together in just a week and a half.”

Heritage Shores donated the facility to use for the family to experience a day where Noelle got to be treated like a bride. Anjanae Lee did her hair and make-up, Bridal Boutique donated a wedding gown for the day, and Nyelle Creations made her a special outfit for dinner.

Limousine Unlimited provided a limo ride for Kuhoric and her parents from their home to Heritage Shores. The family enjoyed a special photo shoot with their daughter in a wedding gown with photos by Captis Omnes.

A couple other teens battling cancer were invited to celebrate with her on this day, Cole Willey and Katelyn Milligan. Willey shares his journey and support with #ColeStrong.

“She’s not fighting alone,” Haynes said. “She always has support.”

The day ended with the group riding a party bus to Blue Coast Seafood in Rehoboth for dinner. Mia Boyd, Mike Vincent, and Cole Strong were also big contributors.

“I feel excited and overwhelmed, but also really loved,” Kuhoric said on the day of the event. She said her parents, James and Bonnie Kuhoric, adopted her at age four and have given her everything they could.

“I have known Noelle for several years. Every time I see her, she has an infectious smile on her face,” said Beverlee Mister, who is the family’s real estate agent and friend. “She lights up the room and always has a hug for you. She was ecstatic about going off to college this year.”

Christina and Troy Haynes, Sr. understand what the Kuhoric family is facing. They lost their 19-year-old son Troy Haynes to cancer on Sept. 29, 2019. He was an all-star football player at Woodbridge High School when he was diagnosed with Renal Medullary Carcinoma (RMC) near the end of his senior year. The community rallied around Troy Haynes with #FightLike4 in honor of his football jersey number.

The Haynes family had never heard of RMC and neither had the doctors they visited in Delaware and Pennsylvania.

The family moved to Texas the day after Troy graduated from high school, so that he could be treated at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. They learned that thousands battle this cancer, but there is only a one percent survival rate, Christina Haynes said. They stayed with their son Troy in Texas until his passing, then returned to Delaware.

In January 2020, the Haynes officially launched the 4 Troy Foundation. “We started the foundation to improve the lives of those impacted by RMC and offer opportunities to improve the lives of student athletes battling cancer,” Christina Haynes said. They have an outreach portion to support families impacted by cancer and raised funds for RMC research.

As the plans came together for Noelle’s special day, the Haynes family endured another tragic loss. The day before the event, on Saturday, Oct. 24, their 19-year-old foster son Leon Mann died in a car accident.

Though some friends and family encouraged Christina Haynes to reschedule the events for Kuhoric, she said she felt it was important to celebrate the young girl and give her family this “special day her mom will always have to remember” because Kuhoric’s time may be limited.

“This is what keeps me going,” Haynes said of her commitment to the 4 Troy Foundation. “It helps me and the healing process.”