Whether you were a fan of the Michigan State Spartans or not, the entire country became huge fans of Adreian Payne after hearing the story about the connection he had with 8-year-old Lacey Holsworth–a cancer patient with neuroblastoma. Unfortunately, the sports world woke up on Wednesday to the devastating news that Princess Lacey lost her battle to cancer as she passed away early Wednesday.
Over the last two years, Payne and Lacey had established a special bond that would bring tears to your eyes when you first heard about it as the basketball star basically adopted her as a little sister. From joining Payne on Michigan State’s Senior Night to taking part in the celebration with the Spartans when they won the Big Ten Tournament back in March, Lacey was there for it all.
Even this past weekend in Dallas during the Final Four, Lacey was there to support her “big brother” as Payne star put on a show during the slam dunk contest.
As sports fans, hearing this story about the special connection between Payne and Lacey is what makes sports so special. To see an athlete like Payne go out of his way to influence the life of an 8-year-old like Lacey was truly an amazing feeling as it inspired us all to be better individuals in life.
Death is never easy to deal with and the loss of Lacey has made this Wednesday morning a difficult one to deal with across the nation. Lacey and Payne’s story was an inspiration to us all and our prayers go out to Payne and the rest of the Michigan State family during these tragic times.
Thank you Princess Lacey for being an amazing individual and one of the strongest fighters we’ve ever seen, but more importantly for teaching us how to love. You will be missed and your courageous story will never be forgotten.