FSU Softball Team Adopts Teen with Brain Tumor

Madison Marshall
Posted at 11:15 PM, Jan 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-15 23:15:00-05

TALLAHASSEE, FL (WTXL) -- A Calhoun County teenager undergoing chemotherapy became an honorary member of the Florida State University softball team Friday night.

The Seminoles partnered with the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation to adopt 16-year-old Madison Marshall of Clarksville.

Marshall suffered a seizure on New Year's Eve 2014 - the start of a long and painful journey.

"She's given us strength," said her father Terry Marshall, "and she's given us courage to keep fighting."

A level 3 brain tumor called anaplastic astrocytoma put the 16-year-old through 35 MRI's and a year of chemotherapy.

The Seminoles said they admire her fight and welcomed her to the team with a baseball jersey and backpack.

"I think Madison, being in the dugout with us and hanging out with us and going through her battles, can bring that perspective of, 'I've done what I need to do. Who cares if I'm 0 for 4? Who cares if I'm 4 for 4? I just truly love being in the moment right now, living in the moment, being where I'm at and enjoying this game of softball," said coach Lonni Alameda.

The Friends of Jaclyn Foundation connects kids fighting cancer with college teams. Madison will be #671. The foundation was named after Jaclyn Murphy, another girl with a brain tumor. Her father Dennis was at the special ceremony for Madison.

"There's no chemotherapy, no radiation treatment or clinical trial drug more powerful than love, support and friendship," said Murphy, "and that's what the Seminoles are going to be giving Madison."

"We're going to enjoy as much of it as we can - taking her to games and bringing her over here for practice," said Madison's mother Marie Marshall. "Everything that we can do, because this is really a blessing."

Madison said she hopes someday she'll be well enough to play sports again. As the newest member of the softball team, the girls said they'll be playing for Madison every game.

The team starts its season February 12 in Miami, with the first home game on February 17.