BRADENTON (FOX 13) - A third-grade teacher from Bradenton is in the fight of her life, battling breast cancer. But she's not facing it along, and her students and staff proved that today.
Monday morning was Jill Bass's first day back at Rowlett Academy after several weeks off for treatment. When she walked into the courtyard, hundreds of cheering students and staff greeted her.
There were plenty of hugs and tears as the flash mob broke out into an inspiring rendition of "This is My Fight Song."
"I'm already crying. This is so awesome. These kids have been preparing to welcome her back. We love Mrs. Bass," offered parent Tracey Rosa. "We are a family at Rowlett Academy and we want her to know that we have her back."
"I am just really excited that she is back because I missed her so much," added 9 year-old Jade Campbell, one of her students.
Rowlett is a charter school with curriculum based on Stephen Covey's "7 Habits of Highly Effective People." Erin Fredd, a fellow teacher, says almost everything at Rowlett is larger than life.
"We're just a big family," she said. "We go big or we go home."
Bass says she still has to have radiation treatments, but doctors now consider her cancer-free. She told FOX 13 that she was overwhelmed and numbed by seeing all her fans.
"You don't expect that coming back to work," she exclaimed.