12-year-old from Belize to return home after life-saving surgery

12-year-old from Belize to return home after life-saving tumor surgery

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Even though doctors had to remove her nose and one of her eyes, they said Catarina's tumor will not return. Even though doctors had to remove her nose and one of her eyes, they said Catarina's tumor will not return.
"I'm very thankful, very happy," said Catarina's grandfather Juan Ishin. "I can't describe how very happy, with the doctors and nurses." "I'm very thankful, very happy," said Catarina's grandfather Juan Ishin. "I can't describe how very happy, with the doctors and nurses."
Doctors gave Catarina a prosthetic nose that she can wear when she gets home. Doctors gave Catarina a prosthetic nose that she can wear when she gets home.

By JOSH AULT
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - A 12-year-old girl from Belize who came to Knoxville for a life-saving operation will finally return home on Friday.

Eight months ago, Catarina Ishin arrived in Knoxville to get a football-sized, cancerous tumor removed from her face.

And after a remarkable recovery, she will be going home on Friday.

On Wednesday, she snuck in some last-minute fun, viewing the lighted trees at the Fantasy of Trees. It was a far cry from her small hometown in Belize, which finally installed electricity and power infrastructure just last year.

Catarina's grandfather, Juan Ishin, accompanied her to the U.S. for her operation.

"I'm very thankful, very happy," he said. "I can't describe how very happy, with the doctors and nurses."

Catarina had the tumor removed at University of Tennessee Medical Center and then underwent several rounds of chemotherapy treatments at Children's Hospital.

Even though doctors had to remove her nose and one of her eyes, they said the tumor will not come back.

Prosthetic noses have been created for her to wear when she goes home.

"Their faith is amazing," said Lori Glover, who hosted Catarina on her visit to Knoxville. "They've gone through trials and things that not many people can handle."

Glover and her husband Rick have been helping bring children from Belize to the United States for operations for 10 years. They said Catarina was a trooper throughout the whole ordeal.
    
"She never complained," said Glover. "She did marvelous through everything."

Catarina will not be required to have anymore medical follow-ups here in the U.S. The Glovers just hope that her experience here will teach her that she can accomplish anything in her life.
     
"It's not a goodbye," said Ishin. "They'll keep in touch."

The Glovers will be traveling with Catarina and her grandfather on Friday and will spend a week with them.

The entire country of Belize has been following Catarina and are planning a big celebration when she returns to her village.

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