MIAMI (WSVN) - A South Florida woman had dreams of becoming a Miami Heat dancer before an injury paralyzed everything below her waist.
Still, the Heat were able to help fulfill 22-year-old Kimberly Ocampo’s dream by making her an honorary Heat dancer. “Kim actually reached out to me about a month ago,” said Miami Heat Dancers Director Natalia Gonzalez. “She actually tagged me in one of her posts. She posted a ‘Throwback Thursday’ of her auditioning for us.”
After hearing Ocampo’s story, the team flew her from Orlando to South Florida, making her an honorary Heat dancer. “I really couldn’t even imagine it before, on the way here,” said Ocampo. “I didn’t know what to expect, so when I got here, I got butterflies in my stomach. I’m still nervous, right now.”
The team treated her to a photo shoot that was fit for a star. “I rolled into the room, and it was like hair, make-up, photo shoot, pose, pose, pose. I just had fun,” said Ocampo.
The team even put her in some of the Heat outfits. They also let her strut her stuff on the court.
💭Dance has been apart of my life since early age of 3, me & my father always danced salsa together… from middle school father & daughter dance to highschool talent show , to college dance performance to competing wining prizes to teaching others at a dance class. To Also finding my own ways in step in highschool & hip hop with my friends creating our own dance group & belly dancing , ball room, contemporary & just the LOVE for dance. Since I became paralyzed July 19, 2015 I've found ways to still express myself the way I use to express through dance, now I feel like I've become even more passionate about everything I do .. even to a simple action to sharing a conversation or even just simply smiling to someone. Honestly I'm so much happier today on my wheelchair than before when I was standing & walking. Life has lead into a different direction but change is great & always good thing to have in mind, champions adjust. Have a great day everyone ! -Kim O ❤️😊 #kimocampo #kimsjourney @miamiheatdancers @miamiheat @heatlifers22 #miamiheatdancers #miamiheatgame #dance4life #dance #lovemylife #grateful #smile #greatmemories#kimocampoinspires #meetkimocampo
Ocampo posted a video to Instagram of her practicing a routine with the entire team of dancers. She even got the chance to spend time with players like Hassan Whiteside, courtside before the game.
“We just won, so this is awesome,” said Ocampo. “Everyone was like, ‘You’re our good luck charm tonight,’ so that was pretty crazy, but today has been really unforgettable, and to share this awesome win with them was — I’m kind of speechless right now.”
Her fight to always pursue her dreams touched the hearts of all who met her. “Watching her transformation and her nature to just keep going brought a new perspective,” said Gonzalez. “She inspires me, and I would hope she inspires a lot of people just because you can let one thing distract you from what you want to do in life.”
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