Cherokee County firefighters made Christmas a little brighter for a 14-year-old Woodstock resident who recently had a liver transplant.
“The girl, Bella Pacini, asked for two things for Christmas — a new liver and her house to be decorated for Christmas,” Fire Capt.n Scott Gwinn said. “My friend Mark Wills contacted me to assist in decorating her house.”
According to Bella’s mother Tracy, “That phone call turned into a group of unbelievable men and women decorating our house for Christmas. Bella always says we never have enough lights and that we always needed to go bigger. This awesome group of people turned that into a reality, and made it bigger and better than she ever imagined.”
Bella Pacini was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease at the age of 6, and later also diagnosed with Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis, which affects the bile ducts. Over the past two years, her condition began to get worse, and she needed a new liver. Doctors put her on a waiting list for one in February, and after several months of waiting, Pacini and her family received a call from doctors on Nov. 18. Pacini underwent a successful transplant the following day and was released from the hospital on Nov. 29.
Prior to her release, Cherokee County firefighters traveled to the Pacini home on the morning of Nov. 25 to decorate it before Bella came home. Joining the team of firefighters in stringing lights and getting the home prepared were country music star Mark Wills and Shine, a local company that installs lights during the Christmas season.
“She was speechless when she came home the day after Thanksgiving,” Tracy Pacini said. “When we showed her pictures of our firefighters and Shine decorating the house while she was in the hospital, she got teary-eyed and said, ‘that’s so cool.’”
Tracy Pacini also said her family always knew they would love living in Cherokee County, because it has such a small town feel that they love so much, while the firefighters said they were glad to make Bella’s Christmas a little bit brighter.