Local Texas Boy with Cystic Fibrosis Goes to Disney

GRAND SALINE, Tex. – A sweet young boy gets to experience all the wonder of Disney thanks to a little guardian angel magic from Kids Wish Network.

Marco is an engaging ten-year-old who loves video games and soccer. With an outgoing personality and a silly sense of humor, Marco is quite a character. His favorite color is red, and his favorite subject in school is math. He loves animals, especially his Chihuahua, Paloma. Marco would love nothing more than to keep up with all the activities of his fourth-grade classmates, but he is hindered by a very serious illness.

When Marco was just a baby, he was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, a chronic condition that inhibits breathing and digestion. His breathing is very limited and his body does not digest his food properly due to the abnormal production of thick secretions in both his lungs and pancreas. He was recently hospitalized in the intensive care unit with pneumonia and is often sick due to infections. Since his pancreas does not work, he must take medications to be able to digest the food he eats. There is no cure for cystic fibrosis.

Marco’s parents received a call from one of Kids Wish Network’s professional fundraisers one night, and ended up nominating their own deserving son for a wish. Marco was later contacted by one of the charity’s wish coordinators, Vanessa, who set out to make Marco’s wish to visit Disney World a reality. Working together with Doris, one of the wish-granting organization’s funding specialists, Vanessa was able to utilize donations from several sponsors so that Marco’s wish could be extra special.

A week prior to leaving for Florida, the family received a large box in the mail from Kids Wish Network. There were many toys and games inside for Marco, who was delighted at the surprise. The arrival of the gifts coincided with Marco’s tenth birthday. As he opened the box, he exclaimed, “All for me?”

Vanessa arranged for the whole family to travel to Orlando, Fla., where they stayed at the fabulous Royal Plaza Hotel. Marco and his family visited Disney World’s Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom and Islands of Adventures, and were then treated to WonderWorks, “an amusement park for the mind.” Marco’s mother, Bertha, said that he loved all the rides at Islands of Adventures, and wanted to go back to WonderWorks because he had so much fun there. Vanessa handled all the details of the trip, from a rental vehicle to dinner reservations, so that Marco and his family could just relax and enjoy themselves.

Having brought home memories to last a lifetime, Bertha said, “We appreciate everything that Kids Wish Network did for our son. Marco had a wonderful time and it was great that he had this chance to enjoy himself.”

For making Marco’s wish extra special, Kids Wish Network would like to thank: The Royal Plaza Hotel, Pirates Dinner Adventure, Pizza Hut, WonderWorks, Friendly’s, Economy Drug, and Wal-Mart.

Kids Wish Network is a nationally recognized non-profit organization dedicated to infusing hope, creating happy memories, and improving the quality of life for children. If you know a child between the ages of 3 and 18 who may be in need of its wish granting services, please call 727-937-3600 or toll free 888-918-9004. For more information on Kids Wish Network, visit their website at www.kidswishnetwork.org


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