This is one of those stories that makes your heart grow three sizes - a story of love, compassion, and most importantly one of HOPE.
We brought you Ryan Kania's story just two days ago: a request for the young mom, who is battling advanced cervical cancer, to receive a priceless gift:
A sleepover party with her closest loved ones, surrounded by laughter, love and memories created.
Ryan is not only a warrior, she has brought her community of Buffalo, NY together this Christmas season, as hundreds of messages and comments flooded our page - messages of kindness and requests to help this mother, who is just 33 and fighting this most aggressive form of cancer.
We are not only thankful, we are blown away by the generosity, but we certainly are not shocked. Buffalo, after all, is the 'City of Good Neighbors'.
We are so happy to announce that Russell J. Salvatore of Russell's Steaks, Chops, & More will host Ryan and her group of thirteen guests during the upcoming week for this grand sleepover party!
Manny Lezama, who works closely with Russell told Hope Rises,
"Mr. Salvatore was very saddened to find out about Ryan's situation, especially during the holidays. Russell has the biggest heart in Buffalo, adding enhancements to this experience for Ryan including a horse and carriage ride for the family to tour the lights festival outside of the hotel, and it will fit her entire family. The sleepover will be a very magical night, featuring dinner, and a gourmet popcorn and cookie bar. We are very glad to help and Salvatores Grand Hotel will add this to the book of the greatest guest at our property."
Ryan told Hope Rises that she has been overwhelmed by the outpouring of love from her community, many of them complete strangers, and called this, "a true blessing".
Stay tuned for the awe-inspiring moments from this unforgettable experience for Ryan, her husband, Brian, their beautiful baby boy, Mason, and her other family members, including her parents, Laurie and Gary Erhardt, sisters, Ami Jiang and Julie Tafelski.
"Even though she is the one going through this, she is constantly telling ME that it will be okay," said Brian. "She needs to keep fighting because this world is a better place with her in it."
We believe in the power of HOPE and we thank everyone who has reached out to support Ryan. A few in particular include:
Christmas Angel "Dave" who has offered to provide Buffalo Sabres Suite tickets for the New Year's Eve game for Ryan and 18 of her closest loved ones, Frankie Brumsted who is providing Ryan with goodies from her favorite store, PINK Victoria's Secret, Alyissa Landri Photography who has offered to provide photography for the sleepover party, and Mary Friona of Totally Buffalo who truly helped pull all of this off, adding a few enhancements to the experience that we are sworn to secrecy on - STAY TUNED!
"When I saw the post on Hope Rises, I was devastated for Ryan and her entire family. As a mother of four myself, I can't even imagine what they are going through. I knew I had to help in some way. I reached out to some of my incredibly generous friends to see what we could do, and of course they all stepped up.
You see, this is what makes Buffalo and WNY so special - people are always willing to help. Russell Salvatore and Manny Lezama are two of the most caring and gracious people and we are incredibly fortunate to have them here in our community. It brings tears to my eyes knowing there are such caring people willing to help someone they have never met," said Friona.
HOPE certainly RISES!
The original story available here.