Lining up outside Claire Lankford's Dickinson house and winding through her neighborhood were hundreds of people who, mostly, don't know the 5-year-old girl. But they love and support her all the same. "It's an absolute dream," said Patricia Lankford, Claire's mom.
Little Claire has terminal cancer, but still has dreams of being a princess. "She's a girl, she loves princesses, the glitter and fancy dresses and fancy hair," said her mom. Wednesday afternoon she became one joining the likes of Belle, Cinderella and Snow White for a "Princess Parade" organized by family friends. "'What do you think about all these princesses for you?' I like it," said Claire.
And picking her up at their front door was the only Prince Charming she's ever known... her dad. "You take one day at a time and you remain thankful for each day you have. That's my message to everyone be thankful for your family members because life can change in a heartbeat," said Claire's dad, Kevin Lankford.
Their horse-drawn carriage circled the subdivision over and over again to the cheers and smiles of so many new friends. "People know my child's name, they know her story and her face and that is the blessing through all this. People know my child who is a loving, caring person," said Patricia Lankford.
Claire doesn't have much time left. After being cancer free last summer, just last month doctors found 5 tumors on her lungs and lymph nodes. But she was here on this magical day to see her community rally around her. "She was always happy, always thankful and if that little girl can have that spirit then we can all be happy and thankful and grateful for everything we have," said Patricia.