Students in Laurrel Scott’s kindergarten class wear masks to show support for their classmate, Madisyn Taylor, center. Madisyn was diagnosed with a brain tumor in 2018 and recently began chemotherapy treatments.

By Kathryn Vaughn, Special to The Leader

The Brighton community is rallying around kindergartener Madisyn Taylor, who is currently undergoing her first round of chemotherapy at St. Jude to treat a Pilocytic Astrocytoma Tumor.

Madisyn was diagnosed with the brain tumor in 2018. She had surgery to remove the tumor but due to its sensitive location in her brain, the doctors could only remove part of the tumor.


After much discussion, Madisyn’s parents and medical team made the difficult decision to allow the tumor to grow for 12-18 months so that it may now be treated with chemotherapy.

Her doctors are hopeful that the chemotherapy will stop any further growth of the tumor in the future.

Madisyn began her first round of chemo in early 2020 and her treatments will continue throughout the year.

“Cancer picked the wrong little girl to mess with,” said kindergarten teacher Ms. Laurrel Scott.  “My students decided to show support for Madisyn by wearing medical masks with her today. The chemo can affect white blood counts; making people undergoing treatment have less ability to fight off illness. Madisyn is wearing a mask to protect herself and my students wanted to wear them to support her,“ added Scott.

Brighton Elementary School is selling ribbons to raise funds to help support Madisyn and her family as she undergoes treatment. Each bow is made in Madisyn’s favorite colors: purple and teal.

“Our goal is to keep a smile on Madisyn’s face. Every time she sees one of her ribbons displayed at school or around in the community, she gets so excited and is reminded that we all love her and are pulling for her at BES,” said school secretary Lori Beth Belk who helped organize the ribbon drive. “We want to thank Hometown Flowers for helping us with the ribbons,” she added.

“I love the support my daughter has at BES. The love and support she has been shown has been overwhelming and more than appreciated. My heart is full,” said Madisyn’s mother, Nikki McClain of Burlison.

Ribbons to support Madisyn and her family are available for purchase by calling or emailing Brighton Elementary at 901-840-9500.

Echo Day
Author: Echo Day

Echo Day is an award-winning journalist, photographer and designer. She is currently The Leader's managing editor.