Buhler and Nickerson’s communities come together to honor teenager


BUHLER, Kan. (KSNW) — Two months and a day since Nickerson cheerleader Hadley Nelson lost her life to cancer, her hometown of Nickerson and Buhler held a “Gold Out” in her honor for their girls basketball matchup.

“It was completely their idea,” explained Bailey Gorges, Nickerson cheerleading coach. “Which was amazingly kind and we’re so grateful for it. It just means a whole lot and I can’t thank them enough.”

D’Ana Heinlein is the Buhler head cheerleading coach, but also Nickerson’s school nurse. It was that avenue where Heinlein met Hadley.

“When you’re talking about a community member who a lot of our girls has known her since she was little bitty, it doesn’t matter that they’re from Nickerson and we’re from Buhler we’re one community,” Heinlein said.

Heinlein and others decided to do something to remember Hadley, a gesture the Buhler cheerleading team was all in for.

“[Heinlein] had a really hard time with this, so we thought we could all rally together and help this family,” Kelsi Span, a Buhler cheerleader, said.

No one knew had any idea how popular the gold shirts would be.

They sold nearly 500.

“I really thought it would be the student sections and that was it, but everybody was showing support. It spiraled to bigger than what I ever even expected,” Heinlein said.

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