OESTEOSARCOMA cancer victim Esther Lagi was in tears yesterday when she saw the huge response from the public in the Walk On Walk Strong Save it or Shave it (WOWS SOS) at the Vodafone Arena.
The 16-year old who was diagnosed with the bone cancer last December said she was overwhelmed by how much people cared.
"When I found out I had cancer I felt so alone. It was so unfair! My family was fighting with me but that's as far as it went, you felt so secluded from society and the world and so alone fighting this battle," she said.
"Sitting here, watching so many people shave their hair to raise money for cancer victims and seeing so much support from corporate companies and the public has been so overwhelming. You don't feel alone somehow - all this people care, all this people are fighting with you."
Ms Lagi had to give up school and sports - two things she loved. She did not enrol with her colleagues at Rishikul Sanatan College in January because of chemo treatment. A day after her 16th birthday on May 8, she had to have both her legs amputated as the cancer had spread rapidly.
"I didn't feel like I was normal. I felt ugly and wrong, not only for the world but to myself. It was so hard for me to be around people because I was so shy of my amputated legs and my hair loss.
"I've slowly gotten over all that, it's been hard to get your self-esteem back but its support like this from all these people that have made me feel normal again."
She received a surprise when her favourite Fijian rugby player, ACT Brumbies wing Henry Speight hand-delivered her a wheelchair at the Vodafone Arena.
"I can't stop blushing," she said.
Ms Lagi thanked the contributions from the corporate companies and the public for the WOWS campaign and encouraged other cancer victims to remain strong in their battle of the illness.
"We are not alone, we are beautiful and we are survivors. Do not give up!"