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For cancer survivors, ringing a bell on their last day of treatment signifies the end of cancer treatment and the beginning of a new life.
Having rung this special bell outside the infusion room of their treatment center, 18 cancer survivors from across the country have come together this holiday season for a special bell choir performance to celebrate their new beginning.
During their performance of Silent Night, a montage of photos and videos played behind them showing moments of joy, celebration and triumph from their journey through chemotherapy to reach remission.
The stories of their cancer journey, all uniquely powerful, lead to the ringing of their final treatment bell that reads:
- Ring this bell
- Three times well
- Its toll to clearly say,
- My treatment's done
- This course is run
- And I am on my way!
For the Survivor Bell Choir, ringing these bells this holiday season is a celebration of their journey and a message of hope to those still battling the disease. Luther King, one of the 18 bell choir participants, fiercely fought cancer so that he could see his youngest son graduate college. Now, he wishes to spread hope to those who are still healing. He shared, "I think I had to do this to give those who are in the situation that I was in hope."
With little to no musical background, this group of survivors from around the country initially met as strangers. Over the course of rehearsal, friendships bloomed as the group bonded over their shared journey and common fight for a cancer-free life.
Conductor Richard Hickam from AdventHealth reflected on his experience teaching and conducting the Survivor Bell Choir, "Advent means 'the coming of. As I think of them and their recovery journey, this is the start of something new in their life."
The Survivor Bell Choir's story will be shared during the holiday season through television commercials and on social media. On the new AdventHealth YouTube channel, a video series highlights the Survivor Bell Choir performance, their stories, and a behind the scenes look at the journey to their performance. The performance can also be downloaded on iTunes, Amazon Music and Google Play with proceeds benefiting cancer support efforts.