HAMMOND, La. (WAFB) - Dozens of people attending Amite High’s back to school event held at Southeastern Louisiana University were captivated at a rendition of the Star-Spangled Banner sang by Sharnwanika Cotton.
Before the performance, a speaker told the crowd about the numerous adversities Cotton has faced since a young age.
“At twelve years old [Cotton] found out she had scoliosis... When she was about 15 she was in a truck accident. The truck flipped three times," the speaker introducing Pittman said.
First responders were able to rescue Pittman from the truck just “seconds” before it caught on fire.
Later in life, Cotton was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, the speaker said. Gasps could be heard coming from members of the crowd in a video posted to Facebook.
Those gasps turned into thunderous applause when the speaker later announced through tears that Pittman has been free of cancer for five years.
"She has been the mother to me that I never had. And, she is truly my hero,' the speaker said.
In a Facebook post Cotton shared the video and said “When you have a testimony, it’s hard to sing anything without God shining through. My prayer was for the lives would be changed and they will see God and not me.”