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Lifestyle & Human Interest

Nurses Sing Backstreet Boys to Patient Battling Leukemia Who Was Forced To Miss Concert

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From the outside, things seemed to be going pretty well for 36-year-old Amanda Coley from Georgia. She has a husband, four children and recently completed dental school.

But at the beginning of August, Amanda was hit with some devastating news.

“On August 1st, Amanda was diagnosed with leukemia,” her GoFundMe page reads. “She is staying at Northside Atlanta hospital which is almost an hour and a half commute from her house. Her minimum stay at the hospital is 4-5 weeks.

“So driving back and forth could get pretty expensive during this time,” the page continues. “Amanda had just graduated from dental school and just started her career. Amanda is a wonderful mother to 4 beautiful children and amazing wife to a hard working man.”

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Another thing to know about Coley is that she’s a huge fan of The Backstreet Boys, as is her sister, 25-year-old Maggie Mayes Kingston. They’re such big fans that their husbands bought them tickets to a concert for Christmas last year.

As it turned out, the much-anticipated concert landed on Aug. 21, while Amanda was still in the hospital being treated. There was no way she’d be able to make it to the show.

“We found out about three weeks ago that [Coley] had leukemia,” Kingston told People. “She was like, ‘So I can’t go to the Backstreet Boys concert?’ That was the first thing she said. She was crying. Both of us are huge fans. She told me I should go. But I said, ‘I’m not gonna go if you don’t go!'”

Not about to abandon her sister, Kingston decided to bring a bit of the concert to the hospital room. A group of nurses jumped in to help, and the result was a room full of people singing Backstreet Boys hits.

“When you get BackStreet Boy’s tickets for Christmas and some unfortunate situations happen … bring a surprise BSB concert to your sick sister!” Kingston posted. “Thank you for the shirts Celena Townsend and for the invitations Mason Mayes! The nurses here are awesome if you can’t tell! Help these nurses go viral!”

“I was crying!” Kingston told People. “It was really emotional. We didn’t expect it. We were just in awe. Amanda danced with them! She was in heaven. She said it was really cool and emotional. She shed a couple happy tears.”

Touched by the animated group of nurses, Amanda told Good Morning America that “it really lifted my spirits,” adding “I can honestly say the nurses at Northside Hospital are the best.”

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The clip has gone viral, and has gained plenty of fans — including one very important individual.

“We missed you last night Amanda!” Nick Carter tweeted. “Looks (and sounds) like you have a great team helping you get better. We’re thinking of you and sending you love. To the nurses of Northside Cancer Center, thank you for all you do!!”

Obviously, both women were thrilled to get the shout-out, something they wouldn’t have gotten just by going to the concert.

“We both cried together — we were over the moon,” Kingston said. “We still fan-girl pretty hard when we talk about it.”

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking