'ChelseaStrong' fundraiser planned for teen - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

'ChelseaStrong' fundraiser planned for teen

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Chelsea Clark gets a visit from friends at the hospital. Chelsea Clark gets a visit from friends at the hospital.
Chelsea is taking inspiration from Chuck Pagano as she takes on leukemia. Chelsea is taking inspiration from Chuck Pagano as she takes on leukemia.
Her basketball teammates are helping raise money for her treatments. Her basketball teammates are helping raise money for her treatments.
FRANKLIN, INDIANA -

Despite the Colts' loss Sunday, the "CHUCKSTRONG" campaign continues to gain momentum.

In fact, one central Indiana girls basketball team has tweaked it a little to reflect a 6th grader's fight against the same type of leukemia Colts Coach Chuck Pagano is battling.

Twelve-year-old Chelsea Clark read her favorite quote on a t-shirt made for her, "You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice."

Clark was diagnosed with leukemia in October. She explained how she feels about her connection with Coach Pagano.

"I feel that he's going through the same thing that I am. He is someone I can look up to, because he is getting the stuff I am going to get in the future. I know if he can do it, I can do it," she said.

"She has been the strongest out of all of us. We are very proud of her and getting used to the new normal," Chelsea's mother, Jennifer, added.

That "new normal" involves weekly visits to Riley Hospital for the entire family, while Chelsea gets chemotherapy. But with the Franklin community by their side, this family is staying "CHELSEASTRONG."

Chelsea's fellow basketball teammates tweaked the popular motto and they're trying to cash in on a "CHELSEASTRONG" fundraiser.

"It's really cool. They both start with 'CH' - Chuck and Chelsea," teammate Addison Utterback said.

The basketball team is rising money for the family by selling t-shirts and bracelets before dedicating Tuesday night's final game to Chelsea. The girls are also raising money through a voting process to shave one of the school's coach's heads.

"CHELSEASTRONG" t-shirts are $10, the bracelets are $2.

Because of her chemotherapy, Chelsea will not be able to go to Tuesday's game. But school leaders have set it up so she'll be able to watch the game online via Skype.

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