Month: May 2017

Sir Edward’s Story

Sir Edward is a young boy who loves Skittles, Chick-fil-A, bowling, playing Uno and Dominoes, and riding his scooter. He was born with Sickle Cell disease and has had to be hospitalized many times over the years. Because of his illness, Sir Edward is unable to participate in many normal childhood activities, which makes a lot of things difficult for him.

For several years he’s expressed his desire to go to Disney World. In April 2023, Sir Edward and his mom attended the St. Elias Lebanese Food and Cultural Festival where he learned that his magic moment had been granted and that he, along with his mom, aunt, and 12-year-old cousin, would be traveling to Disney World a few weeks later.

After the trip, his mom told us they had a perfect vacation. “It was an answered prayer,” she said.” Sir Edward could not believe that someone outside his family cared enough to send him to Disney World.” And Sir Edward reported that he was so excited while on his dream trip that he could hardly sleep.

Amelia’s Story

12-year-old Amelia, who was born with a very serious congenital condition, waited four years before her dream of seeing the Los Angeles Lakers play became a reality.

Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for children to have to wait months for their magic moments to be fulfilled for a variety of reasons. And of course, COVID delayed nearly all magic moments.

When the stars finally aligned and we were able to plan Amelia’s trip, we found out that the Lakers would be playing soon in Orlando. Her family agreed that she would love a trip to Disney, second only to seeing her favorite professional basketball players live. In December 2022, we were finally able to give Amelia her magic moment capped off by a special trip to see Mickey Mouse and friends at Disney World! As a bonus, we forged a new partnership with the Lakers franchise, and they have been involved in many more magic moments since.

Nathan’s Story

Nathan, 16, was already an accomplished guitar player and composer when he was diagnosed with leukemia. His parents told us he immediately turned to music to deal with the stress that came with his diagnosis. For his magic moment, Nathan requested a piano and piano lessons, and Ellis Piano provided us with a heavily discounted upright piano. We also arranged for Nathan to see his favorite band, St. Paul & the Broken Bones, play locally. He even got to play his guitar onstage with them. A few weeks later, after watching a YouTube clip of Nathan playing with the band, a local music store was so impressed that they offered him a position as a part-time guitar instructor. Nathan’s family says he loves his new job and has been using his piano to compose original songs. This magic moment exemplifies how communities rally to help children and families, not only fulfilling requests but taking extra steps to bring joy to the kids.

Kaiden’s Story

Kaiden was diagnosed with cancer in 2021. He is a huge Auburn fan, and when the Auburn football team learned he wanted to go to Disney World, they volunteered to surprise Kaiden with the news and also make him a “Tiger for a Day.”  The players and coaching staff treated Kaiden like a recruit, giving him football gear and inviting him to run plays with them. The Auburn Family topped the day off by telling him that he and his family would be going to Disney World. No doubt that this little boy’s special reveal and magic moment created life-long memories not only for him and his family, but for the Auburn team who made his day so special.

Maize’s Story

We continue to create magic moments for young athletes and sports fans, like 14 year-old Maize. Maize was an avid soccer player when he started having unexplained rashes in 2021. Multiple tests finally revealed the unthinkable – stage 4 Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Maize immediately began treatment, and his family contacted us a few months later with a request. Maize wanted to watch FC Barcelona, his favorite team, play live. Although we couldn’t fly them to Spain, we were able to get the family tickets to see Barcelona in a match against the American Red Bulls in New York City.