Girl with cancer dies before bikers can grant final wish
It was supposed to be a dying wish come true for a girl in Roanoke with cancer. But this evening, an hour before a bike ride was so start to brighten Qwa'Tina Fralin's spirits, she died. And so the ride turned into a memorial.
Years before she could drive, the nine year old loved motorcycles.
"She has always wanted to ride a bike," said godmother Lekeshia Billingsley. "This was her dream, this is what she loved."
Her family knew it. Her friends knew it. They also knew she was about to die. Given only days to live in an 18-month battle with leukemia, bikers from around Roanoke gathered.
"To let Qwa'Tina see and hear what brought her so much joy," she said.
But minutes before they started they got the news. Qwa'Tina had died. They continued anyway.
"Today was just going to have a family gathering, with the family and the bikes," said Billingsley through tears.
Qwa'Tina was on the list for a bone marrow transplant. Statistically it's much harder for African-American patients to find a match.
"If you look around, you can see a lot of people here," said organizer Devone Gravely. "This little girl meant a lot."