Press Release

Happiness Strikes with Usain Bolt and a Wish

Love of Running Connects Connecticut Boy with World’s Fastest Man

Watch video here: https://youtu.be/cb0l3w15slc

AVON, Conn. (November 2020): Twelve-year-old Isaac has cerebral palsy and other serious conditions, but nothing holds him back from what he loves – running.  After a brain-bleed, doctors thought he’d never walk, talk, or recognize his own family. At one point, he wasn’t even expected to live. Isaac defied the odds and not only survived but is now running cross-country. 

Isaac draws inspiration from Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt, the eight-time Olympic champion and eleven-time world champion who set unprecedented records with his lightning speed. Kids Wish Network, a children’s charity that grants wishes for kids with life-threatening illnesses, reached out to Isaac’s idol and arranged a surprise. 

 

Balloons, Sneakers, and a Bolt of Surprise

Isaac thought he was just shopping for a new pair of sneakers at his local Fleet Feet. Then, store manager Stephanie Blozy met him with balloons, gifts, his choice of stylish running shoes, and exciting news to share: “Kids Wish Network is making your dream come true!” she exclaimed. “You’re going to have a live Zoom call with legendary sprinter Usain Bolt.”  Before leaving the store, the very happy champion and his family struck Usain’s signature “bolting” pose.  

During the video call, Isaac learned how his idol became a sprinter, why he loves competing, and details about his record-breaking triumphs. The two athletes share a love for sprinting and discovered they have many common traits, including having one longer leg, which can make running difficult. “It was like they were twins,” joked Isaac’s mom Jennifer.  Videographer Alyson Grisham filmed the meetup, so Isaac has a keepsake to remember his meaningful time with Bolt.

 

More Wishes to Come  

Isaac’s wishes didn’t end with the Zoom call. Kids Wish Network announced more surprises, including a Carnival cruise. Once it is safe to travel again, the family can choose to go to Jamaica, where his idol lives, or select another spectacular destination. Isaac has already made his decision, declaring, “I want to go to Jamaica!” 

“The whole wish-granting process is inspiring,” said Isaac’s mom. “Kids Wish Network listens intently to what kids have to say. To get something so special is amazing.”  

“We’re so appreciative to Usain Bolt for further inspiring Isaac to keep forward momentum in following his dreams,” said Kids Wish Network Chief Executive Officer Tam Lai. 

 

You Can Help Kids Like Isaac

Anyone can become a wish granter and help provide memorable connections and opportunities like Isaac received. Medical professionals, family members, and others can also refer kids like Isaac to receive hope-infusing wishes.

Visit www.kidswishnetwork.org to learn about the different programs.

 

###

Kids Wish Network has been making dreams come true for children since 1997. We are dedicated to infusing hope, creating happy memories, and improving the quality of life for children experiencing life-altering situations. We started with the single purpose of granting wishes to children suffering from life-threatening conditions but have since created additional programs to benefit kids nationwide, including Hero of the Month, Project Toy Drop, Holiday of Hope Gift Banks, and A Child Forever Funeral Assistance.