Union County girl fighting cancer surprised with new playground

MARVIN, NC (WBTV) – A Union County girl battling cancer has a brand new playground in her backyard thanks to some caring neighbors.

Elly Perlman, 6, was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) about 14 months ago.

“She’s gaining strength again and she has a lot of what little Elly is that we know and love,” said Russ Perlman, Elly’s father. “She plays and does things a six-year-old should do. It’s been 14 long months, but we’re on the right track.”

Even though Elly is doing well, she still has a year of treatment to go. Her family says they can’t take risks with potential exposure if her immune system is weak. Add to that the pandemic and the conditions have made for an isolating year, especially for a 6-year-old.

“It’s harder now than when she was first diagnosed because everyone was locked in at the beginning and that made it a bit easy and also kept her very protected. But now everyone is opening up and being exposed and we’re not there yet,” said Amy Perlman, Elly’s mother.

Dozens of volunteers from TPC Piper Glen Golf & Country Club, Firethorne Country Club and ClubCorp have joined forces with Roc Solid Foundation to bring the fun to Elly’s backyard. Roc Solid Foundation is a non-profit organization that builds playgrounds and provides support to children and families battling childhood cancer.

On Friday, the groups built a brand new playground for Elly within hours.

“To give the child hope. And someone who doesn’t have a playground equipment in his backyard. They can come home from the hospital with their family to this beautiful backyard and just play. Don’t think about it and have a good time,” said Glen Ron Wonderling, General Manager of TPC Piper.

By noon Elly was surprised with the new playground and new friends to support her.

“It’s overwhelming, it’s amazing,” said Amy Perlman.

“You know some of the distances these people have traveled to support us,” added Russ Perlman.

For more information about Roc Solid Foundation click here.

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