Justin caught a BIG one!


Justin couldn’t have been happier

In October 2013, Wish Kid Justin came home from school with a simple headache, but after a few hours it became clear there was much more to it. The 9-year-old woke up screaming in pain; his family immediately called for an ambulance. Once in the ER, he was rushed into surgery where doctors removed a portion of his skull and put in an external drain to release built-up fluid.

Justin was diagnosed with an arteriovenous malformation of the brain, commonly referred to as an AVM. This life-threatening condition is essentially a tangle of blood vessels that direct blood away from normal brain tissue and dilate over time. Eventually, the AVM can rupture from the extreme pressure, like in Justin’s case.

His family never knew Justin was suffering from an AVM until it ruptured. After his emergency surgery, doctors went back in to remove the AVM and replace the portion of his skull. In late 2014, he underwent another surgery that targeted chemotherapy treatment directly into the AVM. The surgery was a success; Justin’s AVM shrunk significantly, though he still must be very careful with any activities that can cause sudden movements or shaking of his head.

Justin is a thoughtful and quiet child that loves to swim and really, really wanted to catch a big fish. KWN knew exactly where to catch one of those and planned an out-of-this-world beach experience for Justin’s wish trip.

Justin had an experience-packed wish trip where he got to do everything associated with Florida. He visited the beach, ate some legendary seafood, met local wildlife (aka alligators and dolphins), toured the Gulf, and, exactly what he wanted, caught a BIG fish!

Thanks to all his generous wish sponsors, Justin had the time of his life.

“Justin couldn’t have been happier,” adds his family.”

A huge “thank-you” to all of the generous wish sponsors who made Justin’s dream come true!

  • Tropical Sands Hotel
  • The Fish House
  • Barnacles Waterfront Dining
  • Nemo’s on the Beach
  • Johnny Rockets
  • Adventures in Paradise
  • Captain Scott Theis
  • Jack’s Airport Tours
  • Glow Golf
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