STAFFORD, Va. (CBS Local) — A 10-year-old cancer survivor says a recent outing to a day spa turned sour when a trio of nail technicians mocked her appearance.
“They called me a boy,” said Iliana Bellard of Quantico, Virginia.
Bellard was diagnosed with advanced anaplastic large cell lymphoma, an aggressive form of cancer that attacks the lymph nodes, in January 2017.
After months of chemotherapy at the University of North Carolina Medical Center in Chapel Hill, her cancer was in remission and Iliana and her mother, Elizabeth, had reason to celebrate.
On Friday, they went to the Imperial Salon and Day Spa in nearby Stafford. But a celebratory girl’s night out turned sour when staffers began mocking the Iliana’s appearance.
“She said, ‘It looks like a boy is getting her nails done. It looks like everybody’s going to think that a boy had his nails done,'” Elizabeth Bellard told WJLA.
Mrs. Bellard said she explained to a manager that her daughter had just finished chemo and this was her first outing in public.
The new salon manager, Brandy Nickle, said the employees’ behavior was unacceptable.
“Do I condone what she did? By no means. I myself had ovarian cancer,” she said.
Nickle said she fired one employee and suspended two others. She also ordered sensitivity training for every employee, including the owners.