Emmy Cherry was a ten year old girl whose parents were Jimmy and Dana Cherry. They were killed when a tornado hit their house in Atkins, Arkansas on February 5th, 2008. Emmy was described as a bright, generous, and beautiful girl who loved animals. Lynn of Vintage Books, who knew Emmy, quoted:
"Erin Hunter has no greater fan than Emmy Cherry. She has not only read every book, but insisted that we all read them. I am 50 years old, and reading them. Her grandparents are reading them. Her aunts are reading them. Every child in the Middle School is going to read them. Because they are Emmy's favorite authors."
It is also revealed that Emmy's cat, Shasta, survived the tornado, but consequently lost the use of one leg. Emmy Cherry is Brightspirit's real name, and she survives in the Warriors series for books to come.
- Brightspirit is dedicated to Emmy Grace Cherry. The Erins decided to give that girl and her parents special warrior names in their honor. Brightspirit is the girl's name, and her mother and father are Shiningheart and Braveheart, respectively. They appear in Long Shadows, and have their own play, entitled Beyond the Code: Brightspirit's Mercy.