87°F
weather icon Clear

Hundreds honor girl with cancer on her birthday

Tissue-paper confetti filled the sky. Silly string was sprayed. Bubbles were blown. Horns honked.

It was a picture-perfect day as hundreds of cars, many decked out with tropical decorations, colorful balloons spilling out of their windows and signs covering their doors, passed slowly by a home on Avenue I on June 18 as Boulder City residents came out in full force to wish one girl a happy 11th birthday.

The parade, which lasted well over an hour, was held in honor of Emilee Giamanco, who is battling an aggressive brain cancer.

As they passed by, people dropped off bouquets of flowers and balloons, stuffed animals, gift-filled baskets and bags, cards and cash.

In addition to the many Boulder City residents, special guests at the celebration included Chance, the Golden Knights mascot, accompanied by several members of Vegas Vivas cheerleader squad; Spruce, the Las Vegas Aviators mascot; and Cinderella. She arrived, not in a golden carriage that was once a pumpkin, but in a black stretch limousine and bearing a small pink box that contained an all-expense-paid trip to Disneyland from United Nissan. Cinderella also serenaded Emilee, wishing her a happy birthday.

“This is amazing,” said Emilee, who waved to all who passed by.

Emilee’s mom, Marissa Giamanco, said the parade was originally intended to be a small gathering with family and close friends.

But once word of the party got out, “the rest is history,” she said.

Marissa Giamanco said among those invited was Cheri Emerich, who works at King Elementary School where Emilee was a student. She let Mike Pacini know about the celebration and he jumped on board and put plans into place to throw a party of a lifetime.

“She just inspires me,” Pacini said about Emilee.

After meeting with Emilee and her parents, he said he felt he needed to do something to help out.

“No little girl should have to do that,” he said of her illness and treatment.

He first became acquainted with the Giamanco family while working with Emilee’s aunt, Lori Tesch, at Lake Mead Cruises.

In addition to organizing and DJing the parade, Pacini started a Go Fund Me account to raise money to send the family to Emilee’s favorite place: Disneyland. He set a goal of $10,000 and as of Monday afternoon, had raised more than $11,200.

Hali Bernstein Saylor is editor of the Boulder City Review. She can be reached at hsaylor@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9523. Follow @HalisComment on Twitter.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Holiday pancake breakfast tradition continues

The Rotary Club of Boulder City’s annual Damboree pancake breakfast is still a go for Saturday, albeit with a few changes.

Patriotic platter sure to please all

Saturday is Independence Day. Let’s celebrate with a red, white and beautiful fresh fruit, crispy cracker and sweet fluffy dip platter sure to please everyone at your table.

Agencies provide assistance for veterans

In just a very short time, America was changed significantly due to the worldwide infection of the dreaded COVID-19 virus. These resources can go a long way in helping to keep Southern Nevada as safe as possible.

By any name, rice dish is delish

As the summer heats up, keeping meals simple and comforting feels grounding to me. Maybe you, too? You could say I’m craving simplicity bathed in melted cheese more than ever.

Show dad you think he’s peachy keen

This weekend we celebrate all the great fathers and father figures in our lives. One way to let them know how much we appreciate them is to make a fabulous dessert that’s just peachy. Or nectarine-y. Your choice.

Men’s luck ran out at gaming table

It’s a story about a game of chance that turns deadly. Some even speculate there may have once been a powerful curse that lurked in the heart of the Old West, for example, at a particular gaming table in Virginia City.

Seen on Scene: At Free Fishing Day

Left, Juan Santos helps his son, Angel Santos, fish during Free Fishing Day, presented by the Nevada Department of Wildlife, at Veterans Memorial Park on Saturday.

Best dam salads

At this time of the year when spring is winding down and summer temperatures are starting to rise, a salad can be very refreshing, delicious and keep you from feeling weighted down.

Transformer fire sparks power usage questions

An unseasonably hot end of May/early June spiked more than daily temperatures. A transformer “can” caught fire on a utility pole in the alley between Avenues I and K. This incident particularly caught my attention because it was right next to my backyard.