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Daughter's cancer battle inspires mother to write fairy tale book

By Brian Heap, bheap@kwch.com
Published On: Jan 28 2014 08:10:21 AM CST
Updated On: Feb 13 2014 04:19:01 PM CST
WICHITA, Kan. -

For a sick child the halls of a hospital can be scary and lonely.

Perhaps the best medicine is a light-hearted story told by a fairy.

With magical wings and purple locks, "The Hair Fairy" provides children in the Wesley pediatrics unit with a comforting break from prodding nurses.

But there's a special story behind the story she's reading.

It's the real life tale of a little girl who faced and beat cancer twice by the age of 5.

In December 2012, Eyewitness News told the story of Baylee Banning.  The then-Kindergartner at Maize Central Elementary had an entire school behind her as she faced weekly chemo treatments.

It was during that difficult time her mom, Brianne, had an idea.

"We were trying to figure out a way to talk to her about how she's going to lose her hair," says Brianne.

Unable to find a book that struck the right tone for a young child and didn't mention the big "C", Brianne set out to write her own.  Together, she and Baylee created "The Hair Fairy" who collects lost pieces of hair and keeps them until the owner has proven her bravery.

Now The Beautiful Bald Princess is published and scheduled for release.  Brianne thinks it has a positive message for all children, not just those with cancer.

"The whole gist of the story is she realizes I'm still the same person on the inside no matter what I look like," says the author.

As for Baylee, she's now cancer-free and thriving. She's playing sports and just gets to be a kid again.

Hers is an amazing story that's better than any fairy tale.

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