Being the US Soccer SheBelieves Hero was a Highlight of a Lifetime!

WOW! I had such an amazing weekend in New Jersey with the US Women’s National Team at the SheBelieves Cup, and US Soccer made me feel like a real hero! If you don’t look at anything else, be sure to at least check out the halftime story US Soccer did about me. Click on the photo below for the link.

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There were so many amazing moments, that it’s hard to share them all. In my previous blog post, I shared some photos from the team’s training session on Saturday. Here are some highlights of Sunday’s GAME DAY:

I got a VIP tour of Red Bull Arena and helped the USWNT equipment team put player uniforms and cleats in their lockers! So cool!

I was reunited with Julie Foudy in the Press box before the game. I’ve spoken at her Sports Leadership Academy a couple of times, and she is just the best! I also got a preview of the halftime story US Soccer put together about me and Juggling for Jude, which aired on ESPN2.  You can see the full story HERE.

I also got to meet the USA Hockey Women’s Olympic Championship team, who was at the game to be honored at halftime! They let me hold their gold medal and juggled with me on the sidelines before the game. It was AMAZING!!!! They were all SO nice!

I got to say hi to Sophie, the 9-year-old girl who nominated me for the SheBelieves Hero Award and also flew to NJ from CA to come to the game! And I met Danielle, last year’s SheBelieves Hero–super cool!

I got to do the coin toss with Alex Morgan, which was amazing and my seats watching the game were RIGHT next to the players’ bench.

After the game, I went to the Press Conference with Coach Ellis. That’s my USA beanie in the back. 😜

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And I also met Julie Ertz, who was super nice and signed my jersey and chatted with me, even though she was bummed because she’s injured so couldn’t play in the match. She was awesome and is so inspiring!

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Sadly, the day came to an end, but I was escorted by our amazing US Soccer host, Elizabeth Sanchez out to a car with USA HERO on it and a super nice driver named Demitri. I don’t really consider myself a USA Hero, because that’s really more about real heroes who fight for our country, but I am so honored that US Soccer acknowledged my work for kids with cancer with this amazing trip! It was filled with memories that will last a lifetime!

But the best part of all was that my Dad and my grandparents came, even though it was just me and my mom who got the VIP access! It was so great having them there at the game to watch me toss the coin and see me on the big screen! I couldn’t have done any of this without them!

Oh, one more media story on my journey last week came from KPIX-TV San Francisco. You can check it out by clicking on the photo.

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Now that I’m back home, it’s time to focus again on the work for kids with cancer, through my support of the lifesaving mission at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The juggling, fundraising, and speaking continues! If you would like to make a DONATION in honor of my award, I would be so grateful. Every dollar truly helps save a life of a child with cancer. Thank you so much for reading my story and for your support! I am doing what I’m doing because of so many generous people!

~Hollis

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Being Here at the SheBelieves Cup with the USWNT as SheBelieves Hero is AMAZING!!!!!!!!

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I don’t even know where to start to explain how exciting this day has been! I got to watch the USWNT training session the day before their game against France tomorrow. Everybody was so nice to me and made me feel so special. US Soccer gave me a bunch of jerseys, including one that says SHEBELIEVES HERO on the back! I got hugs from a few players, got to chat with Carli Lloyd and Coach Jill Ellis, and I even got to lead the team in their end-of-practice cheer, as you can see in in this video:

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Allie Long and Kelley O’Hara told me what to say. It was a blast! I got to juggle on the side of the field, which was hard, because it was gusty winds and maybe 20 degrees. I was wearing boots and a huge US Soccer parka they let me borrow, but I managed to get enough for some good photos and a little video. I even made it onto the USWNT Instagram story! I cannot wait for the big game tomorrow, and rumor has it I will get to go on the field before the game. This is truly a dream come true, and I am so thankful for the opportunity to share my Juggling for Jude story and spread the word about St. Jude.

Thank you, USWNT, for the experience of a lifetime! And of course, if anyone out there wants to DONATE to St. Jude to help kids with cancer everywhere, you can do that HERE.

THANK YOU!

~Hollis