A teenage girl who suffers from an incurable disease has been crowned prom queen before she chooses to die later this summer.
Jerika Bolen was honoured with her own personal prom, a chance to say goodbye to friends and loved ones. The 14-year-old was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type 2 at just eight months old.
The brave schoolgirl, from Appleton, Wisconsin, lives in constant pain and must spend 12 hours a day on a ventilator. She has also endured more than 30 operations and is confined to a wheelchair.
On Friday, Jerika held her ‘Last Dance’ prom at the Grand Meridian in Appleton.
She was chauffeured in a stretch limo to the event, which was decked out in her favourite colours of lime and black with a sweet buffet and cakes for guests.
The inspirational youngster was crowned prom queen and even presented with her own tiara and sash.
Jerika made the brave decision to end her life after her most recent surgery, where her spine was fused, leaving her in pain that had become too much to bear.
She told The Post-Crescent: “I was ready then. I was ready a long time ago.
The teen had her spine fused, but her pain only got worse. “After that surgery…I kind of sat down and thought, ‘Am I doing this for me or for my family?’
“I kind of realised I was doing it for my family.” Jerika’s mum Jen vowed to honour her daughter’s wishes.
She told WBAY News: “We’ve bawled before and I said, ‘Jerika, I love you that much that I will not let you suffer.