MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) —  A long-time Minnesota woman is taking her destiny in her own hands. She’s been given the worst news there is, but she’s making the best of the situation.

Thirty-three-year-old avid weightlifter and roller derby athlete Megan White lived in Minnesota until two years ago when she and her husband moved to California to help care for her Mom.

Not long after, Megan found out she had an extremely rare terminal neuroendocrine cancer of the larynx.

On Wednesday afternoon, Megan found herself the center of a party at Minnehaha Park.

“My friends are truly loyal,” she said. “Nice to have all these people show up. Feels like my wedding.”

Megan who has terminal larynx cancer, calls it her “waking wake.”

“I just wouldn’t want to miss a party that’s about me,” Megan said. “It’s much nicer this way and everybody can use this opportunity to connect and laugh and tell stories and not be about crying.”

There were some tears but mostly laughs. Megan,who recently moved to California, hit the road with her husband Collier and their devoted fur-babies for one last road trip.

They left Long Beach, hit New Mexico, Austin, Chicago before coming to a huge COVID conscious crowd of masked and socially distanced Minnesotans.

“Some people may not have done that, gone across the country in an RV. But Megan decided she was going to do that and she was going to say goodbye to the people that she loves,” Kim Carrier, a longtime Minnesota friend said.

On other stops, she’s used a protective sheet to hug people.  She wasn’t well enough for that in Minnesota but she got lots of verbal affection.

Like from her former coworker Joe.

“She has the ability to connect with people instantaneously,” Joe explained.

Megan said the trip has been rewarding but arduous.

“It’s hard to know this is the last time I will see most of these people and that I’m dying,” she explained. “It’s really tough.”

But Megan is also really strong.

“You see by the number of people here today, she just connects with people,” her husband Collier White explained. “When you are with her you know you are being seen and heard and it’s ok and you’re safe.  She’s just a beautiful person.”

“The love is definitely not missed, it’s heavy in the air,” Megan added.

Megan may have terminal cancer but she also has unending grace.

This will be the last stop on the tour. Megan and Collier will head back to CA where she will resume hospice care.  The goal is to make it to Halloween — their 5th wedding anniversary.

Megan’s friends are raising money to help pay for the road trip. If you’d like to help out, click here.

Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield