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The Globe and Mail

Girl who met Will and Kate gets her Christmas wish

The Duchess of Cambridge hugs six-year-old Diamond Marshall as the Royal Couple arrives in Calgary Thursday, July 7, 2011.

Nathan Dentte / The Canadian Press/Nathan Dentte / The Canadian Press

The shy, bald little girl who charmed Prince William and Kate when they visited Calgary in the summer has gotten her Christmas wish.

Diamond Marshall's father says she had surgery this week and the biopsies have shown her cancer is in remission, though she still must undergo chemotherapy and a bone-marrow transplant next month.

Diamond's brief meeting with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on a windy July day brought many Canadians to tears.

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The six-year-old, who is battling Stage 4 undifferentiated sarcoma, had asked the Children's Wish Foundation for a chance to meet "a real princess.'' She not only got to meet Kate, she managed to get in a hug with her idol and present her with flowers.

Lyall Marshall, Diamond's father, says he believes the brief encounter with the royal couple helped his little girl fight the disease.

"That hug had a lot of meaning, we're very thankful for that meet and greet for her and the whole community rallying behind her," said Mr. Marshall. "From a father's point of view when you can say the whole world is rooting for you to get better, I mean, that's a lot.''

William and Kate were told by their private secretary about Diamond's condition and issued a statement saying: "This is a wonderful piece of news, especially at this time of year and we will be thinking of Diamond in the coming year.'' Diamond will spend Christmas in hospital recovering from the surgery, but her dad says they're all okay with that as long as they're together.

If all goes well, Diamond will be home for New Year's Eve.

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