NEW YORK CITY, N.Y. (October 2019): Kiely-Ann loves history and dinosaurs – her favorite is the mighty Tyrannosaurus-Rex. She was born with arthrogryposis multiplex congenita (AMC), where joints become stiff and fixed in a bent or straight position, and a contracture can additionally lead to muscle atrophy. She’s also challenged with an autoimmune condition. Kiely-Ann has undergone many surgeries, and will have more as she grows. Kids Wish Network, a children’s charity that grants wishes for kids with life-threatening illnesses, made her dream come true, flying her family to New York City for a prehistoric experience at the American Museum of Natural History’s Halloween Sleepover.
Kiely-Ann arrived with her T-Rex costume, sleeping bags, and flashlights sent by Kids Wish Network for her family’s big night among the dinosaurs. During her time at the museum, she also experienced a live animal presentation, exhibits, and a scavenger hunt to uncover all the secrets that awaited them in the darkened museum halls. “She absolutely loved it, she smiled the entire time,” said Kiely-Ann’s mom Kielisa.
Before her memorable sleepover, Kiely-Ann and her family stayed at The Skyline Hotel and toured the area’s sites and tourist attractions. The family also enjoyed a wonderful brunch at Lombardi’s, the first pizzeria in the United States. After the wish, her family kindly donated their sleeping bags to a homeless shelter in the city.
“Kiely-Ann’s unique wish was both educational and a wonderful time of family togetherness,” said Kids Wish Network Executive Director Tam Lai.