Six weeks after sustaining a serious shrapnel wound and fearing that she had lost her mother in the horrific Boston Marathon bombings, Massachusetts teen Sydney Corcoran was crowned queen of her high school prom on Tuesday night.
"When I was in the hospital, I didn't think this was going to be possible," she told Boston's WCVB News. "Then I got to rehab and I was up and doing things. I felt like I could do it. So it was a goal. This and graduation, definitely goals."
Still using crutches, the raven-haired 18-year-old looked stunning in a full-length, strapless white gown. "I'm so happy to be back," she said when she arrived at the prom venue, Lowell Auditorium, with her date. "It's just really good to see everyone."
Friends and supporters tweeted their congratulations after she was crowned. "I can't think of a more deserving queen than you, sweetheart," wrote @ celamorwari. "WON PROM QUEEN? YOU. GO. GIRL. She is such an inspiration. So beautiful and strong, inside and out. #bostonstrong," tweeted @rinnconnley.
On April 15, Sydney and her mother, Celeste, were standing near the finish line of the Boston Marathon waiting to cheer on Sydney's aunt Carmen Accabo when a blast ripped through the crowd. The teenager, whose iconic photo was splashed across the news, suffered a severed femoral artery. Her mother lost both legs below the knee. Mom and daughter were rushed to Boston Medical Center for surgery and eventually transferred to Spaulding Rehabilitation Network.
Before the Marathon attack, Celeste worked as a hairdresser. Sydney told the "Today" show that of course her mom would want to help her primp for her big night. The day of the prom, she had her hair done at her mother's beauty salon on Newbury Street in Boston, not far from where the bombing occurred. It was her first trip downtown since she began rehab. Although her mother is still recovering from her injuries, Sydney said, "She was determined [to help out], so she made sure that she did my toes."
Both Sydney and her mother have received an outpouring of support both online and in person. Actor Bradley Cooper visited them in their hospital room a few days after the bombings. A Facebook fund has raised over $700,000 to help them with their medical bills. Earlier in May, Boston salons and other businesses held a fundraiser called the Celeste-A-Thon. "There's people all over the world who have reached out to me," Sydney told "Today." "And see, I'm going to start crying, it's so touching to me." It's a response fit for a queen.
Sydney's high school graduation is June 7, and she plans on attending Merrimack College in the fall.
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