POLAND — The room was warned ahead of time: Olivia Marshall was going to scream.

She walked in, saw actor Patrick Dempsey, and didn’t disappoint.

The 14-year-old from Lyme, N.H., had Dempsey posters on her old bedroom walls. Her family, picked for ABC’s “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” had been flown to Disney World to wait out construction and returned a day early to find the show had set them up for a second surprise: Meeting Dempsey.

That revelation came Saturday afternoon at the Wolf Cove Inn. TV’s “Dr. McDreamy” was in the area for the inaugural Dempsey Challenge, a bike ride, run and walk to raise money for the Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing at Central Maine Medical Center.

The “Grey’s Anatomy” star had just sat down to a lunch with donors and sponsors after a 20-mile bike ride when the Marshalls — with no idea why they were in Poland, Maine — walked inside.

“This teenage girl starts screaming,” said hospital spokesman Chuck Gill.

There were hugs, introductions.

ABC had only contacted the hospital on Thursday, “It just literally came together the day before,” Gill said.

According to WMUR, an ABC affiliate in New Hampshire, the Marshalls have eight children, one of whom, Cameron, 10, has had leukemia. Their old home had mold problems.

“The father was almost unable to come in through the backdoor when he realized what was happening,” said Wolf Cove Inn owner Marie Struble. About 55 people, and a camera crew, were in her Grand Room at the time. “There was lots of laughter out there. It was just a really special, unbelievable atmosphere.”

Listening to Cameron and hearing what the boy had been through, Struble said Dempsey teared up.

The actor started his namesake center in Lewiston after seeing his mother go through cancer treatment three times.

“I know he was struck just by the look in his eyes and the story of Cameron,” Struble said. “(Dempsey) was as natural as can be, as if he was a member of the family. He definitely made the family the center of attention.”

The Marshalls spent about an hour at the inn.
Struble said Olivia Marshall was so excited to see Dempsey initially that she thought the TV program reshot Olivia’s entrance.

Gill said their “EMHE” episode will air Nov. 29. They were due to see their new home for the first time Monday night. An ABC spokesman said the family was being kept under wraps until Tuesday.
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