Aurora, Neb. – A sweet little girl battling a cancerous brain tumor was granted a wish to visit various Florida theme parks by national charity Kids Wish Network.
MacKenzie is a 3-year-old girl who loves Hannah Montana and the Disney princesses. But while most little girls her age spend their time playing with toys and dolls, MacKenzie prepares for another MRI.
In September of 2008, MacKenzie was diagnosed with Astrocytoma: a cancerous brain tumor located near her brain stem and spinal cord. Due to the tumor’s location, MacKenzie has a hard time with her eating habits, as the area of the brain that controls hunger is affected. Doctors were able to remove roughly 85 percent of the tumor and implanted a g-tube allowing MacKenzie to receive regular meals. She continues to have MRIs to ensure no new growth is occurring.
A close friend of MacKenzie’s mother referred MacKenzie to national charity Kids Wish Network, whose mission is to create happy memories, infuse hope and improve the quality of life for children. Lisa, MacKenzie’s mom, was surprised at the referral.
“I knew nothing about it. We got a call that said MacKenzie had been referred by my friend,” she said.
For her wish, MacKenzie chose to visit the Florida theme parks. Kids Wish Network arranged for the family – which includes MacKenzie, her parents and two brothers – to stay at the beautiful Regal Sun Resort in Lake Buena Vista, and various dinners were also set up including a Pirates Dinner Adventure.
“MacKenzie loves princesses and castles and that’s why she chose this for her wish,” Lisa said. “At Disney she got to meet Cinderella and was very excited about it. She was shy but she took a picture and got to talk to her. She wanted to do it again after it was over.”
MacKenzie is just one of over 73,000 children that Kids Wish Network has created a happy memory for this year. Lisa said everything was wonderful.
“Just seeing the whole trip through all of our kids’ eyes was awesome. It’s something we wouldn’t have been able to do without Kids Wish Network.”
Kids Wish Network would like to thank the following for helping to make MacKenzie’s wish extra special: The Regal Sun Resort, Compassion Partners, Pirates Dinner Theater, NYPD Pizza, Elephant Bar and Wonderworks.
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. Kids Wish Network is especially proud of their “Guardian Angel Fund”, which uses 100% of its contributions to support the wish granting program. If you know a child between the ages of 3 and 18 who may be in need of wish granting services, or would like to contribute to a child’s wish, 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.