Riverside student battles cancer, gives back to fellow patients

Bella Muntean was diagnosed with bone cancer, and now is using her diagnosis to help others. (Picture Credit: Bella Muntean)

GREENVILLE CO, SC (WSPA)  – A Riverside High School student has spent the past two years in the hospital fighting for her life. Now, she’s using her diagnosis to help others in need.

Bella Muntean, a freshman at Riverside High School, says she used to be a dedicated dancer. One day, she says she felt a numbing pain in her leg.

“My knee started to hurt, and [the doctors] said, ‘Oh it’s a minor bone mis-growth,” Bella says.

She says the pain got worse, until one morning she woke up and couldn’t breathe.

“They took some X-Rays in the emergency room, and when they showed us the scans, my chest looked like a blizzard in my chest. There were all these white balls all throughout my lungs,” says Bella.

The bump in her leg was a tumor and the cancer had spread to her lungs. Bella was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma, an aggressive form of bone cancer, when she was just 12 years old.

Bella started aggressive chemotherapy, and most of the bone in her right leg had to be replaced.

Throughout the endless chemotherapy and radium treatments, Bella told her mom something that shocked her.

“She’s told me several times that she’s actually happy that she got cancer,” said Brenda Muntean. “She said I know now my purpose in life is to get better and to help kids like me.”

Bella and her mom created the “Angels of Hope Against Cancer” care packages project to help other cancer patients feel a little better during their treatments.

“You have to keep fighting, and you have to stay strong, and you have to make sure that you can help others so you can raise awareness for this to help raise funds and make sure someday they can find a cure for this,” Bella says.

For more information and to donate to Bella’s care package project, click here.