How Shriners Children’s St. Louis is helping a young girl’s dreams come true

Published: Sep. 27, 2023 at 6:27 PM CDT
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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - A diagnosis of scoliosis didn’t stop a Shriners Children’s St. Louis patient from reaching for the sky.

Sydney’s grandpa owned a plane. When she was 13 years old, he let her take control.

“I was freaking out and was shaking the whole time but it was the most freeing feeling,” recalled Sydney.

Sydney is now a sophomore in Kansas State University’s pilot program. But there was a time when it looked like she may have had to pursue a different passion. When she was 13 she was diagnosed with scoliosis.

“I had pretty severe back pains before the surgery and I’d get migraines because of the pain,” she said.

When Sydney was a senior in high school she decided to have surgery to fix her spine. She went to Shriners Children’s St. Louis for the surgery that would not only reshape her spine but her future.

“Without the surgery, I probably wouldn’t get the first-class medical needed to get a job at the level I want to be a pilot,” Sydney said.

Join First Alert 4 on Oct. 4 for our KMOV Cares 4 Kids Day, which will be an all-day telethon to benefit Shriners Children’s St. Louis.