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DOWNEY ( — The chance relationship between the city of Downey in Los Angeles and Roscommon County in Ireland led to a coincidence in timing that may have saved a woman’s life.

Pearl Crosby-Dillon, 37, is a mother of two and the daughter of Tom Crosby, mayor of Roscommon County in Ireland.

Crosby-Dillon was short on hope when her doctors told her they had discovered a dangerous tumor, buried deep in her brain. After much research, Crosby-Dillon found a surgeon in Los Angeles, Dr. Hrayr Shahinian, who is renowned for a minimally-invasive procedure that removes tumors similar to hers.

After discovering Dr. Shahinian, who operates at the Skull Base Institute of Los Angeles, Crosby-Dillon contacted her father, who was having dinner with a sister-city delegation from Downey last May. A member of the delegation had recently undergone heart surgery, and his doctor knew Dr. Heryr.

“It was that moment when we got there that night, when we were having drinks and dinner, that we heard about Pearl being ill,” Maureen Gaffney Wolfson of the sister-city delegation said. “And so there it was. There was the spiritual connection.”

Crosby suggests it was the sister-city relationship, that began with the Irish immigrant John Gately Downey, who is considered the founder of the city of Downey over 150 years ago, that may save his daughter’s life.

“It’s a great story I think,” Tom Crosby said. “It’s one that could not have happened, but for the connection between Downey and so many thousands of miles away in Ireland.

While the Crosby family, who held fundraisers to pay for their trip to America, still does not know how much the surgery might cost or how much insurance may cover, they remain nevertheless optimistic.

“Everything has come together so well,” Pearl Crosby-Dillon said. “We feel there is a lot of fate and faith that has taken part in our journey here. And so I have no fear in relation to the surgery, I know it’s all going to go well.”

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