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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Women’s soccer star share’s special bond with friend following cancer diagnosis

Sam+Cristoforo
Sam Cristoforo

For the last four years, Sam Cristoforo has been one of the most consistent players on the wildly successful women’s soccer team. She is one of the finest players on the talent-laden squad, with starts in all 12 matches for the Beacons this year and assists in three of them.
This season, Sam has been sporting a very special accessory: a custom made rubber bracelet with “For Brenna” on it. The bracelet is for Cristoforo’s friend, Brenna Crowe, who was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma earlier this year. Crowe, who has maintained a very positive attitude during this difficult time, has not only inspired Cristoforo but has also left an impact on the entire team.
When asked about her bond with her friend, Cristoforo said, “we’ve been friends for so long and she just got diagnosed this year, and I wanted to have a way to show her that I’m playing for her, and I wanted to dedicate the season to her because she was missing out on her last year of college.” She added, “It kind of stinks for her because she’s missing a lot at the age of 21 and it’s hard, and I just wanted to show her some appreciation.”
As appreciative as Cristoforo is for Crowe, Crowe appreciates her even more so. Crowe said, “I’ve always been Sam’s biggest fan when it came to soccer. We used to play together when we were younger and even though I sucked, she was a star.” She continued, “I love watching her play. I think now when she plays and sees my name on her wrist, she gets a little more motivation and is reminded that I’m cheering for her! She’s been my friend for the longest time and I’m so proud of everything she is doing.”
Crowe is definitely not your stereotypical cancer patient. She is full of energy and positivity. She said, “people hear cancer and automatically think of someone sick and dying but it’s not always like that and I want to be able to show people that no matter what you are going through, you should stay strong and fight for what you want.”
Crowe’s positive attitude has impacted other members of the Lady Beacons squad. Cristoforo said, “The girls that I’m closest to know about it and they’ve been really supportive (…) there’s a walk coming up in Boston and I’m going to get some of the girls to go and we’re going to be there for her.”
It’s clear that Crowe is on Cristoforo’s mind every time she’s on the pitch. Cristoforo said, “usually before the games I look down at the bracelet and I just have it there to remember that she’d love to be doing the things she wants to do but now she’s stuck in her house and doing her chemo, I just wanted to dedicate my play to her.”
Crowe has been doing very well lately. She is 99% cancer free according to Cristoforo and she’s feeling well. Crowe has been touched by the support that Sam and her other friends have given her. She said, “I always knew I had the best friends in the world but to see how much they all care about me motivates me so much to get through all of this.”
Cristoforo and Crowe have one of the rarest of bonds. They both provide strength to each other and help each other strive to be better. They’ve truly managed to turn tough times into nothing but a positive and are re-writing the book on how to make the best of a bad diagnosis. The two friends are proving a commonly held belief to be 100% accurate: never underestimate the power of a good wristband.