At Nicklaus Children's Hospital, formerly Miami Children's Hospital, 14-year-old Caroline Pallidine found the care she needed to overcome leukemia and the strength to face the world without the once-flowing tresses she lost to chemotherapy.
Caroline was hospitalized in the Oncology Unit in July 2011, when a visit from musician Armando “Pitbull” Perez, as part of the national “Get Well Soon Tour,” inspired her to shed the wig she had been wearing when out in public. The pair posed for pictures with matching smiles and shiny scalps.
When Caroline left Nicklaus Children's, she also left her hair-related worries behind, embracing her temporary baldness with pride. That moment was liberating. Her transformation was celebrated at Miami Children's Health Foundation’s annual Diamond Ball where Caroline’s journey was highlighted. Pitbull, who was touring with other musicians, recorded a special salute to Caroline that was shown on screen.
“Caroline, you already know what it is. It’s about being Bald, Brave, Beautiful™,” said Pitbull. “You are an inspiration.”
And indeed Caroline is. Her story inspired a spontaneous donation from Miami Children's Health Foundation Board Member Ravneet Chowdhury, who pledged a $1 million gift at the Diamond Ball in the young girl’s honor.