PELION, S.C. – 15-year-old Chelsea, who suffers from Cystic Fibrosis, enjoyed some time in the spotlight on the hit show “Gary Unmarried,” starring comedian and actor Jay Mohr, through the help of Kids Wish Network and their friends at CBS.
At 7-months-old, Chelsea was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis, a condition which often leads to life-threatening lung infections and also interferes with food absorption. Chelsea must endure daily breathing treatments as well as enzyme treatments every time she eats. She must also take numerous medications daily and is in and out of the hospital frequently.
Despite her illness, Chelsea is a very active 15-year-old who is secretary for her student council, a reporter for her school newspaper and is even a member of the drama club. Her dream is to become an actress when she grows up and she was thrilled when a nurse at the hospital where she was being treated mentioned that children’s charity Kids Wish Network might be able to grant that wish for her.
After her parents got in touch with Kids Wish Network, Chelsea found herself entrusting her dream to Wish Coordinator Jill, who worked very hard to fulfill Chelsea’s wish to be a star.
With the help of some outstanding sponsors, Jill arranged to have Chelsea and her family flown out to Hollywood where Chelsea would get to appear on camera in the hit show, “Gary Unmarried”; she even organized amazing accommodations, dinners every evening, attractions and even shopping excursions for Chelsea and her family to enjoy!
“It was very exciting,” said Chelsea’s mother, Michelle. “Chelsea had the best time. It was a lot of fun for her…her face was just shining the whole time!”
According to Chelsea, “Hollywood is the complete opposite of my small town in South Carolina. It was absolutely amazing. There was so much to do and see. Ms. Jill did an excellent job setting up things to do. The restaurants we ate at had great food and shopping for shoes was so much fun! I loved seeing where a lot of celebrities lived, too. I had so much fun the whole time I was there. There was never a dull moment! Ms. Jill did a great job! She’s the best.”
Of course, her favorite part was being in the spotlight during the filming of an episode of “Gary Unmarried” at the CBS Studios.
About her experience, Chelsea said that “the real experience was way more exciting than what I imagined…Everyone came up to talk to me, even the stars of the show! All the people made sure I knew exactly what to do and did everything in their power to make me feel comfortable. I was lucky to get on a show with such a great cast and crew!”
As for the stars of the show, Chelsea raved about how wonderful they were:
“Meeting the cast was amazing. They were like a big family and they welcomed me into their family for a day. I’m so grateful that they did. They were all so super nice and funny. They all joked around on the set and I really felt included. They kept personally coming to ask me if I was having a great time. They were great people to be around! Being on ‘Gary Unmarried’ was the greatest thing that has ever happened in my life. I had an amazing time and I would really like the chance to be on a show again!”
While she was being filmed, Chelsea discovered something very exciting: that she loved being on camera. According to the teen, it was almost as if the camera wasn’t there at all for her; she’s definitely found her “calling.”
Now that she’s back home, Chelsea has told all of her friends and not a one of them can wait for the episode in which Chelsea appears to air on national television.
“My wish was completely granted,” said Chelsea. “I had the most amazing time. It’s something I’ll never in my life forget. I am truly grateful to everyone who made my wish come true possible!”
Kids Wish Network would like to thank the following for helping to make Chelsea’s wish extra special: “Gary Unmarried,” Koji’s Sushi and Shabu Shabu Restaurant, Starline Tours of Hollywood, ALS Limousine, Norman Lewis Limousine, Trastevere Restaurant, Nine West Corporate, Hollywood Wax Museum, Renaissance Hollywood Hotel, Wal-Mart Supercenter Store #1164, Pelion Woman’s Club and West Anderson High School in Memory of Thomas Randall.
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