Woman battling cancer gets free flight home to Winston-Salem

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Angela Ortiz is home in Winston-Salem after being away from her daughters and husband since February.

Ortiz, 30, has advanced leukemia and was undergoing chemotherapy in New York.

But after nearly four months of treatment, doctors said her body wasn’t responding.

Ortiz just wanted to come back home.

“Just my family, to be with my girls and my doggie,” said Ortiz.

She was able to make that trip for free on Friday through Castle International.

The air ambulance and rescue service flew her home at no cost to her family.

A gift Ortiz’ husband says will help him take care of his wife as they look for new treatment.

“This is a fight that our family and especially my wife, I won’t let her give up,” said Eli Ortiz. “We’ll continue as much as we can.”

Her daughters Natalya,14, and Eliana,7, were surprised by Angela’s arrival at Smith Reynolds Airport.

They say the homecoming is a chance for much-needed bonding.

“Have some family time with her like all of us just being together,” Eliana said.

“She’s a really funny person,” Natalya said. “She can make a joke out of everything.”

Ortiz says that laughter has kept her strong on her darkest days and will help her face tomorrow, no matter what it brings.

“If it’s my time to go home, at least I’ll enjoy them,” Angela said.

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