Bella Rodriguez-Torres inspired countless people to live like her – and now, in a way, drivers on a Miami-Dade street will too.
Public officials and family members gathered Monday to designate Southwest 107th Avenue from 120th Street to 136th Street as “Live Like Bella Way” in honor of the 10-year-old South Florida girl who lost her six-year battle with cancer in May.
“We are humbled, but we’re inspired,” said her father, Raymond Rodriguez-Torres. “We miss Bella terribly, but we’re inspired that so many people would be inspired by her life – so much so that a county and a city would name a street for people to live like her, live like Bella.”
The street was renamed after Miami-Dade County commissioners passed a resolution to do so on Sept. 17.
Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez and Monsignor Pablo Navarro from the family's church – Saint John Neumann Catholic Church in Kendall – were among those on hand for the special ceremony.
Bella, who fought cancer six times, died May 28 after an outpouring of support in South Florida and across the country. The family’s motto of “Live Like Bella” was taken up by the Miami Heat, celebrities and thousands of people on Facebook and Twitter last spring.
Earlier in her battle with cancer Bella – who wanted to become a police officer – was made the Miami Police chief for a day.
After she passed away, Rodriguez-Torres’ family founded the Live Like Bella Foundation for childhood cancer. It has three purposes: to fund childhood cancer clinical research trials, to assist families that have a child undergoing cancer treatment, and to help families that have lost a child to cancer.
For more information, go to LiveLikeBella.org.
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