2010 marked two milestones for Brayden. In November he finished his final rounds of treatment for his cancer. Then in December, his wish to have a yellow Labrador puppy was granted. Two Make-A-Wish elves delivered Dash the Puppy on Christmas morning, much to the delight of Brayden, who was then 5 years old. “He was just so excited that he didn’t know what to do with himself,” recalls his mom.
Yes, he’s still a big fan. Four years after his wish to have Portland Trail Blazers season tickets, Cody Wippel continues to follow his team. Only now, he’s watching the Blazers on TV in Corvallis, where he’s a junior at Oregon State University.
Cody still thinks about that day in 2008, when he got to meet the Trail Blazers, including then-coach Nate McMillan, Brandon Roy, Rudy Fernandez and Steve Blake. “At the time I was overwhelmed with what I was going through. Getting a wish like that helped me see the positive side of it, stay positive.”
A Reflection on A Wish - 15 years later
By Christopher Bradley
My favorite part of my wish trip was being able to move about at will throughout all of Walt Disney World® Resort. For the time I was there with my brother and my parents, we basically had the run of the place; not only were we on a Make-A-Wish trip, we were guests of the Give Kids the World village, and the button they gave me allowed us to go to the front of any line at any of the Disney parks. What greater joy for a child than to be able to skip the line for Space Mountain, go on the ride, and come straight back to the front of the line again? And then repeat the process six more times? These things aren’t supposed to happen in real life. Our week was truly magical.
Austin Benson was 11 years old back in 2002 when the Make-A-Wish Foundation® of Oregon granted his lifelong dream of meeting the Seattle Seahawks. Austin never forgot what that wish meant to him, and has since decided to give back and share the power of a wish®.
For his senior project at Camas High School this past spring, Austin sold “Cancer Sucks” wristbands, helping to raise money on behalf of children suffering from lymphoma and other life-threatening illnesses as he once did. At the end of his project, Austin presented the Foundation with a $1,019 check.
In 2000, 17-year-old Andrea asked the Make-A-Wish Foundation® to grant her wish to have a hot tub and gazebo. Ten years later, Andrea is 27 and healthy.
Being diagnosed with leukemia just before her 16th birthday meant Andrea endured months of coping with chemotherapy and radiation treatment, along with side effects of intense pain.
“I had a lot of muscle pain, so the hot tub helped me to relax,” recalls Andrea, who used her hot tub two to three times per week to soothe her body. “I really enjoyed it.”
Jason Tumpane was 14 years old when he received his wish back in 2003. He met the creators of his favorite animated television series, and as a special surprise, the staff created a character of Jason in an actual episode.
Ellie Branch was 14 years old and in middle school when the Make-A-Wish Foundation® of Oregon granted her wish in 2004. (She wished to meet Shia LaBeouf, who Elie says has since become “huge, I see him everywhere!”)