There's something special about Kaitlyn Llanez's smile.
The smile would always shine through as a beacon of hope and courage as she fought through a year of tears and struggles.
She may be small in stature but the shy 7-year-old is beating not one but two deadly diseases.
In June, Kaitlyn was undergoing intense chemotherapy for a rare form of an aggressive cancer that produced a mass in her abdomen that forced her to spend a lot of time at Providence Memorial Hospital for her treatment.
The journey was hard and long but that cancer is officially in remission and on Wednesday, Kaitlyn said goodbye to the staff who cared for her during a defining year in her life.
Kaitlyn's doctor knows just what it took to get there, including an incredibly risky surgery and a painful months of chemotherapy.
"She starts a new chapter in her life - cancer free. A cancer-free life, being normal again. No more chemotherapy, no more pokes, no more hospitalizations," said Dr. Mustafa Moazam.
It's like graduation day Kaitlyn's mom said the journey came with lessons along the way lessons. She learned from her young daughter not to give up, do what you have to do even if you don't have to and there's always something good everyday.
As she said goodbye to her nurses and doctor, with her favorite colors - pink and purple all around - quiet and shy Kaitlyn said so much with just a few words.
"Thanks you for making me better," she said.
"We always found something positive in every single day and sometimes it's just because we're here," said Kaitlyn's mom.
Doctor's found a rare and very dangerous blood condition during Kaitlyn's surgery. Because of that all of her family got tested and it turns out both her parents have that incredibly rare disease.
The discovery of the disorder in Kaitlyn has led to both her parents receiving treatment for the disorder.
(Oct. 2012 story)