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Brighton woman battling cancer surprised with Taylor Swift concert package

A Brighton woman battling cancer got a more than pleasant surprise Wednesday with a gifted trip to see Taylor Swift.

Mark Howell of Fund A Life live-streamed the surprise visit to the home of 21-year-old Maddie Odum, who was recently diagnosed with a rare form of cancer.

Howell started the organization in 2012 when he was diagnosed with Stage 4 Melanoma and given just weeks to live. The community then stepped up to raise over $200,000, allowing him to seek treatments outside the restrictions of his health insurance. He now raises money to help families and individuals in crisis have some of the financial freedom.

So Wednesday’s visit was a little different than his usual presentations, as he and various partners were able to acquire a suite to the Taylor Swift concert next month at Ford Field in Detroit so that she and seven guests can enjoy the show.

In the video, Howell surprised Odum with the concert tickets, but then says he has another reason to be there.

“I don’t know how much you know about me or our organization or anything, but I’m a stage four cancer survivor,” says Howell, who then points to his son, who accompanied him on the trip. “I was diagnosed two weeks after he was born, and they told me that I would live to basically see him get about a month old. And so really the whole point of us being here today and why we wanted to support you in so many ways is here I am 10 years later and surviving so many different miracles. And no matter how dark your journey gets, no matter what happens to you, there are miracles that happen. There are brighter days ahead and we want to be here to support you and get you through them and onto better and brighter days.”

Odum said she was grateful for the visit and concert excursion, and definitely planned to take her mom to the show.

“She was number one,” she said.

Odum will also be a guest on Howell’s podcast Thursday.

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