EL PASO, Texas — El Paso Locomotive FC is set to announce the signing of a top-recruit ahead of Saturday’s match against the Las Vegas Lights. In partnership with The Hospitals of Providence (THOP), 11-year-old Amber Berry signed with the team at 11 a.m. on Friday at Southwest University Park as the Locomotive Player for a Day. Berry has been battling leukemia since November 16, 2016.
“We are so excited to sign Amber Berry to a one-day contract with the team,” Andrew Forrest, El Paso Locomotive FC General Manager, Business Operations, said. “She has shown incredible resiliency and courage in her battle with leukemia and has been under the highest standard of care from the great team at The Hospitals of Providence. Because of their hard work and Amber’s fighting spirit, we know Amber will be able to enjoy being a kid again when she completes her treatments.”
The festivities will begin when Berry arrives to Southwest University Park at 10:30 a.m. to be greeted by both Locomotive and Chihuahuas staff. She will then make her way to the field to watch the Locomotive finish training. She is set to sign at 11 a.m. accompanied by her family, Forrest, THOP Market CEO Monica Vargas Mahar and Locomotive coaching staff and players.
During her three-year cancer journey at Providence Children’s Hospital, Amber has undergone more than 54 treatments in an effort to get her well. Her final treatment is expected to be in July.
“It’s important to always stay positive, think of happy thoughts and in the end you’ll see how much you’ve accomplished,” said Amber Berry. “My team has been my mom, my family and all the nurses and doctors who have helped get me better. I can’t wait to take on this next challenge as a Locomotive for a day.”
With aspirations to be an artist, Amber will unveil a one-of-a-kind masterpiece made especially for the Locomotive gameday poster. On Saturday, the Locomotive Player for the Day has an evening filled of soccer fun, team warm-up, autograph signing, game broadcast announcing and spending time with players. Her family will join in the festivities and cheer Amber on as player number 4.
“Amber is one of our warrior patients, she is truly an incredible child who at a very young age has already had to take on cancer and said it’s not going to beat me,” said Nicholas Tejeda, Group Chief Executive Officer for The Hospitals of Providence. “When you meet her you can’t help but feel inspired by her. She not only brightens the days of many of our pediatric patients, but she brings smiles to all our nurses and staff. These kids are our future, Amber is our future and it’s about getting them back on the field to do great things.”