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Miss Pennsylvania visit uplifts patients

When Hope Mickels, 7, of Tunkhannock came with her aunt on Tuesday to visit her sister Faith at Geisinger Janet Weis Children’s Hospital, she had no idea she was going to meet someone “famous.”

Tiffany Seitz, reigning Miss Pennsylvania, stopped by the children’s hospital on Sept. 10 to visit patients and offer encouragement to patients and families.

“It was amazing,” said Hope. “She let me wear her crown and play dress up for a little bit. She told me to be myself and let me know I can be a star someday.”

Seitz took time from her schedule and made sure to visit with every child she could in the hospital.

“I met so many amazing kids. This is probably my favorite part of the job, getting to meet so many amazing people and hearing so many stories,” Seitz said. “I love the fact that I get to talk about miracles, and I get to share with so many kids who are their own walking miracle as well.”

Seitz brought a smile to everyone’s face and took time to talk to the kids and their families, providing a distraction from their hospital stays.

“You’re pretty,” 10-year-old Pratibha Sarki of Scranton said when Seitz walked in the room.

“Thank you. I think you are so pretty too,” Seitz answered. “And I love your hair dress.”

Seitz took time to acknowledge the physicians and caregivers in Pratibha’s room and thanked them for taking such good care of the kids.

For 10-year-old Katelyn Herman of Newport, the visit was a nice change of pace.

“It’s actually really cool. Usually, when I’m in the hospital I see lots of dogs but now seeing a famous person is cool,” Katelyn said. “I want to be a princess when I get older. I want to go to England and be a princess there.”

Seitz is advancing to the Miss America 2020 pageant on Dec. 18.