PHOENIX — After being stuck on a cruise ship for more than two months due to the coronavirus, a Valley dancer who was stuck onboard the Royal Caribbean Freedom of the Seas floating off the shore of Barbados is finally home. 12 News cameras were rolling when she reunited with her family at home.
"Welcome Home Makenna" covered the front of Makenna Madden’s house Saturday afternoon as her mom Trish is filled with excitement and anticipation.
“Anxious!” she said, while waiting for Makenna to arrive home after being stuck on a cruise ship for the past several weeks.
“She’s right there,” she said.
Emotions build as she spots her down the street.
“All the way from Oklahoma,” Trish said.
And then, Makenna and her mom see each other face-to-face for the first time.
“Woohoo!” her mom yells, while jumping up and down, as she steps out of the car.
Makenna couldn’t get to her mom fast enough.
“Are you hugging me?” her mom asked.
And after a slight hesitation...
“Yes! Come here!” she told her mom.
“I’ve been away from the public,” Makenna said. “I’m OK. My dog’s not even recognizing me. Hi!”
Hugs are exchanged all around as Makenna’s mom holds back tears and applause for the people who drove her home.
Makenna’s finally home. Her luggage has been sanitized.
“I am beyond happy just to even see my doorstep,” she told 12 News.
“This is amazing,” Makenna’s mom said. “I finally have my baby home.”
The past several weeks have been hard for Makenna.
“That wasn’t the best time of my life,” she said.
“Stressful, just the unknown,” her mom added.
And Makenna still hasn’t been tested for coronavirus.
“We did daily temperature checks twice a day,” she said. “We had to wear our mask every time we left our cabin.”
But she’s thankful and lucky to be back on land, because, after all, thousands of people, including her boyfriend, are still stuck onboard.
“He’s still there. He doesn’t know when he’s going to go home,” she said.
From here, Makenna will be quarantined at home for a couple weeks.
“I’m going to eat some food, I’m going to shower, I’m going to sleep, lay in my bed – my own bed,” she said.
Camping out at home is exactly where she wants to be. Makenna says she will never step foot on a cruise ship again.
“I actually do not ever want to take a cruise in my life,” she said.
No chance. But she learned a lot.
“How to stay calm in times of crisis,” she said.
And she’ll never forget it.
“Two and a half months later and I am home,” she said.
“I can’t wait to just catch up,” her mom said.