Massapequa Student Battling Cancer Will Get Her Dream Prom

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Steven Anderson, co-founder of the My Fairy Godfathers Foundation, visited Massapequa High School, awarding a free prom makeover to senior Arianna Surrow, who was diagnosed with cancer in September. (Contributed photo)

Since being diagnosed with cancer at the beginning of her senior year, Massapequa High School student Arianna Surrow has maintained a positive outlook. On April 3, she was all smiles again when she was surprised with a free prom makeover, courtesy of the My Fairy Godfathers Foundation.

Arianna was called into Principal Barbara Lowell’s office, where she and her mother learned of the good news. She met with the organization’s co-founders Andrew Ashton, who attended via videoconference, and Steven Anderson, who was there in person. Mr. Anderson is a Massapequa native and Berner High School graduate.

The Florida-based My Fairy Godfathers will pick up all of Arianna’s prom costs, including the tickets, transportation, flowers, dress, shoes, makeup, nails and a custom-cut wig. She is the third Massapequa student to receive the “gift of beauty” from the foundation, and the second to be given the prom experience.

It was Sept. 14, 2022, when Arianna found out she had Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, a cancer of the lymph tissue. She went through eight rounds of chemotherapy, which she finished in December.

Despite a serious health obstacle, Arianna has made the most of her senior year. She was named to highly-selective All-State and All-Eastern vocal ensembles, starred as Vi Moore in the recent musical production of Footloose and served as president of both the Tri-M Music Honor Society and the Model U.N. She is also the founder of the school’s Environmental Club and is active in the science research program.

Arianna also hasn’t let her illness get in the way of the college selection process, continuing with her applications and campus visits. She is narrowing down her choices, and plans to be a dual vocal music and pre-medicine major in college.

“It was very surprising,” Arianna said of receiving the prom makeover. “It’s going to be very rewarding. It’s really a nice ending to my senior year to have this.”
Mr. Anderson said that Arianna will be “Cinderella for a night” when she attends her senior prom in mid-June.

“We give her everything she needs to make the night perfect,” he said.
His sister, Teresa Colgan, is an English teacher at Massapequa High School and reached out to the administration and faculty, seeking nominations. Guidance counselor Allison Fifield suggested Arianna, and was thrilled to see her student chosen for the prom makeover.

“She’s been through such a challenging time,” Ms. Fifield said. “Arianna is a remarkable student and person. As we look forward to her recovery and her bright future, this will be an amazing way to make her prom night all the more special.”

—Submitted by the Massapequa School District

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