Country star Lauren Alaina has shared a devastating memory with fans ahead of a celebratory moment at the Opry in Nashville.
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The former American Idol star will flip the switch on the Opry’s signature barn backdrop, turning it pink for the night to recognize the importance of breast cancer awareness.
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But the singer, who recently released her debut album Sitting Pretty On Top Of The World, shared: "I know first-hand how devastating cancer can be to a family.
"Breast cancer in particular can be a difficult diagnosis. I am honored to bring awareness to this cause on my favorite stage in the world."
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In 2008 Lauren's cousin Holly was diagnosed with a brain tumor, and in 2018 Lauren's step-father Sam was diagnosed with Stage 4 melanoma in his liver, lungs, pelvis, sciatica, lumbar spine, and thoracic spine; he sadly passed away on 21 October that same year.
"My stepdad, Sam, went to heaven at one o’clock this morning," she shared on their GoFundMe page at the time.
Lauren will flip the switch and turn the Opry pink
"He was the purest example of how to love and live life fully. His last few hours were some of the most amazing moments I know I will ever have the privilege of witnessing. He opened his eyes last night. They shined the brightest I’ve ever seen anyone’s eyes shine, and he said: 'Jesus.' We said: 'What do you see Sam?' He said: 'It’s so beautiful.'
"Mom asked him who he saw and he told her a bunch of people, including his mama. He later said: 'I love you all. I found it.' My mom asked him what he found and he said: 'Heaven. I’ve got to go.'"
Lauren continued: "An hour later he went to be with the Lord. I want this story to be an example of how real God is. We are only here for a short amount of time, and we have to live like there is no tomorrow. I want us to all be a little more like Sam. He was strong. He was the most compassionate person in the world.
Lauren and her stepdad Sam and mom
"He would go without to help a stranger. He was a great dad. Now he is with the best Father in the universe.
"Thank you to everyone who has supported our family in this time. We appreciate the love, donations, and prayers that we have received."
The iconic venue has teamed up with Susan G. Komen - the world’s leading nonprofit breast cancer organization, working to save lives and end breast cancer forever - in the fight against breast cancer and on 19 October an array of artists will perform including Lauren, Dillion Carmichael, Maddie and Tae, Del McCoury Band, Victoria Shaw and Dusty Slay.
$5 from every ticket sold will be donated to Susan G. Komen® for the fight against breast cancer. Tickets are available at Vivid Seats and at (800) SEE-OPRY.
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