Inspired by ABC13's story, Mattress Mack gifts local cancer survivor and family World Series tickets

Sunday, October 30, 2022
Mattress Mack gifts cancer survivor and family World Series tickets
ABC13 previously reported on Mely's father, a former Olympian who put his dream on hold to help his daughter learn to walk again.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- When ABC13 first introduced Mely Sehic, we learned that the Cypress teen had a goal of inspiring other children facing a journey similar to hers.

"So many kids, little kids, are walking through this hospital," Mely said while fighting back tears. "I was just your normal regular teenager, and I feel like I now have a purpose in life. I want to give people a light to look at."

RELATED: Cypress father whose Olympic dream was cut short helps daughter learn to walk post-cancer

At age 15, Mely was diagnosed with metastatic pineoblastoma, a stage-4 brain cancer that spread to her spine. She had radiation and chemotherapy after three major brain surgeries at Texas Children's Hospital.

Just days shy of the three-year mark of her diagnosis, Mely is cancer-free.

"All my life, I've just been an overly-positive person and looked on the bright side of things," Mely, a Cypress-Woods High School grad, explained. "I think that's what helped when I first got diagnosed."

The chemotherapy caused nerve damage and cost the former athlete her ability to walk.

But thanks to a team effort, she's nearly 100 percent recovered. A key member of that team? Mely's father, Jasmin, an Olympian who missed an opportunity to compete in the games due to the war in his home country of Bosnia. Jasmin will never get another chance at that spectacle, but his family will attend another major sporting event.

Houston icon Mattress Mack, moved by Mely's perseverance and her family's story, gifted the Sehics tickets to Game 2 of the World Series.

"Everything the family went through, now - we're going to be rewarded by going to the game," Jasmin said of the gesture.

"Childhood cancer survivors have gone through a journey that is more difficult than any of us can begin to imagine," Dr. Susan M. Blaney, Director of Texas Children's Cancer and Hematology Center, said.

"It's been very hard, but God is good," Mely's mother, Amra, admitted. "He's led us to this point, which is great."

Unsure she'd ever walk again, Mely will stride into Minute Maid Park on Saturday and attend her first-ever Major League Baseball game.

"It's amazing that I touched some people's hearts," Mely said. "I'm just so thankful to Mattress Mack for giving me this opportunity."

Mely Sehic wanted to be a shining light for kids fighting cancer; it turns out she's inspired more than just children.

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