GUTS Wish #1: Granted

If you recall, GUTS raised over $27,000 for our local Make-A-Wish foundation. While that’s a big number, there’s a smaller number that means much more: four. That’s the number of wishes that will be granted this year, all thanks to your support.

We didn’t have to wait very long to start seeing these wishes come true. The first wish has already been granted to Rudy, a seven-year-old who has Acute Lymphoid Leukemia. His wish was to go to Disney World. Here is his story, courtesy of Make-A-Wish Central & Western North Carolina:

Rudy is an active boy who loves playing soccer and being outdoors. His diagnosis of Acute Lymphoid Leukemia, a life-threatening illness affecting his white blood cells, has barely slowed him down. He remains a happy and loving child, and like most boys his age enjoys all things Disney—especially the movie Cars.

When given the opportunity to have his wish granted, Rudy immediately knew he wanted to visit Lightning McQueen, his favorite Cars character, in person at Disney World. He and his whole family spent a week in Orlando, where they got park-hopper passes to visit the Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Sea World, and Universal Studios. Rudy and his family stayed at Give Kids the World Village, a Candy Land-themed resort especially designed for kids having their wishes granted.

Before leaving on his trip, Rudy was given an amazing send-off party at BounceU, a national partner of Make-A-Wish. This indoor funhouse—complete with two-story inflatable bouncy houses and an arcade—was the perfect way for Rudy to run off some of his endless energy. He and his friends spent the afternoon bouncing away happily in two rooms of inflatables before it was time for cake and presents.

Rudy’s wish fulfilled his innermost desire to have fun, but also to give back to each member of his family. After months of watching Rudy go through his illness and treatments, it was a time to celebrate being a family again. The trip provided an excellent opportunity for the family to relax, spend time together, and take their minds off things for a while.

That’s a nice feel-good story to kick off the holidays, right? We’re excited that we could relay the news about Rudy and his family having this experience. We thank you again for contributing to this cause through GUTS 2014, and we’ll keep you posted once we learn more about whose wish will be granted next.

By aigacharlotte
Published November 26, 2014