Noah was diagnosed with a catastrophic seizure disorder and has made hundreds of trips to the emergency room since that first seizure. The disorder has taken a significant toll on his body, and Noah continually sees specialists for a variety of medical issues. His bones are weak from all of the medications, and he has broken each of his feet – simply from jumping around like any child does.
There is one thing that brings a smile to Noah’s face every day without fail, Barney the purple dinosaur. He can watch Barney over and over all day long, and then again just before bed. In fact, Noah learned how to use the television remote for the sole purpose of rewinding to his favorite part of the Barney movie again and again. It comes as no surprise that purple is Noah’s favorite color.
Watching Barney brings a joy to Noah that is unexplainable and that nothing else can surpass – so far. This week, Make-A-Wish® Wyoming is sending Noah and his family to Orlando, Florida where he will get to meet Barney in person, and his parents cannot wait to see the look on his face.
“His reaction will be priceless,” said Noah’s father, Todd.
Each year, Make-A-Wish Wyoming grants over 30 life-changing wishes for children like Noah with life-threatening medical conditions. These wish experiences can be pivot points in the course of a child’s treatment, making them feel better and in some cases, even helping them get better. A wish-come-true strengthens families, provides moments of happiness and inspiration, and helps create strong community bonds.
Noah’s wish is among 75 percent of wishes that require air travel, making it a critical – and costly – resource. In fact, approximately 120 airline tickets, the equivalent of 6 million airlines miles, are needed each year to get Wyoming wish kids and their families to and from these incredible experiences.
During the month of April, supporters can donate dollars or frequent flier miles in just a few easy steps. As an added incentive, WWE® Superstar John Cena® will personally match every frequent flier mile donated in April, up to 4.5 million. United Airlines will also support World Wish Day by matching the donations of its MileagePlus® members, up to 3 million miles, through April 30.
“Air travel is a critical resource as we work to grant the heartfelt – and oftentimes very creative – wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions,” said Morgan Legerski, Interim CEO of Make-A-Wish Wyoming. “Donating airline miles or dollars will allow us to continue creating thousands of lasting moments for children like Noah with life-threatening medical conditions.”
It’s a celebration more than 30 years in the making: in 1980, a 7-year-old boy received his heartfelt wish to be a police officer for a day. That one wish inspired the founding of Make-A-Wish® and launched the wish granting movement that circles the globe today. Beginning April 1 and culminating in World Wish Day® on April 29, Make-A-Wish chapters throughout the country will mark the special event with a campaign to raise dollars and airline miles to fund airline tickets for wishes that involve travel.
Noah will be meeting his best friend for the first time. Just a purple dinosaur to some, Barney is an inspiration and source of happiness for Noah.
“Seeing his smile and how happy he will be will make me the happiest mom in the world,” said Fritz, Noah’s mother.
If you know of a child with a life-threatening medical condition, or would like to find out how you can help grant wishes like Noah’s please contact the Make-A-Wish Wyoming office at 307.234.9474 or 1.888.WYO.WISH.