Riley Miller Honored as Hometown Hero

By: Kara Kirtley Email
By: Kara Kirtley Email

At first glance, she's the girl who has it all. Her dazzling list of accomplishments would make any parent proud. She's an honor roll student, an athlete, and even a model.

But things haven't always been smooth sailing for 16 year old Riley Miller. "I had two baby brothers that both passed away from rare forms of childhood cancer." She explains.

The unthinkable. Losing not one but two family members to cancer devastated Riley. "It was difficult for her, she was so excited about her baby brother." Carol Miller, Riley's mother, says.

When he was really little he would squeeze your finger and wouldn't ever let go of it" says Riley.

But during that dark time for Riley, a glimmer of hope found its way into her life. "Actually my brother, the first one that passed away, was in the same hospital as Alex Scott who started the lemonade stands. And that's where I first heard about her story." She explains.

Alex Scott was a remarkable little girl who wanted to help others who had cancer - like her.

"We were like 'that would be a good idea, it would be fun, it would be easy. We can help out in some small way.' And so we just emailed a few of our friends just to see if they wanted to help us out." She says.

Not only did her friends help her out, her whole community got behind her. In the past six years, Bowling Green lemonade stands have raised over 100,000 dollars! "We didn't really have any idea it would get this big and raise so much money." Riley says.

Carol Miller further explains "We're taking the tragedy that happened to us and trying to use it for the good."

Riley says she couldn't do it alone. "I couldn't do it without the help of all of the volunteers. We have over 200 people helping us out each year and I couldn't do it without them helping me."

Riley will be a Junior this year at Greenwood High School and plans on pursing a career in either Broadcast Journalism or politics.

If there's someone you see as a hero, click on the "Community" tab and then the "Hometown Heroes" link to submit your nomination.

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