The Times West Virginian

Opinion

April 28, 2013

Donations to Make-A-Wish make dreams become reality

Reilly Albertson won’t tell you which Disney princess is her favorite one.

Belle? Cinderella? Aurora?

The little 5-year-old girl just smiles without giving an answer. She’ll spend her sixth birthday this week spending time with the princesses, and maybe she’ll choose a favorite then. But it’s unlikely, as the trip with her parents is a wish come true.

And a wish that wouldn’t have been possible without the support of people throughout North Central West Virginia.

Reilly, a spina bifida patient, has been given the chance to visit the princesses and Mickey Mouse and Walt Disney World this week through the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Northern West Virginia. Julie Albertson, Reilly’s mother, said she was thankful for all the support the family received from Make-A-Wish and the community an event held this weekend in Fairmont.

“Reilly’s journey hasn’t always been a smooth one,” she said. “This just kinda gives us an opportunity to get away from the doctors and the day-to-day stuff here and just relax and enjoy a vacation as a family.”

You wouldn’t have been able to tell about that long journey if you met Reilly, the little blonde-haired girl with a bright pink sweater and a brighter smile. She spent the evening collecting golden horseshoe decorations from the tables at the Make-A-Wish Foundation’s Derby Days fundraising event on Friday. She collected four of the horseshoes and hooked them on one extended arm.

“Look!” she said in an excited voice. “I can still wheel my wheelchair and balance these on one arm!”

Each year, Make-A-Wish Northern West Virginia grants between 62 and 65 life-changing wishes for children with life­-threatening medical conditions. These wish experiences can be pivot points in the course of a child’s treatment, making them feel better and, in some cases, helping them get better. A wish­-come-true strengthens families, provides moments of happiness and inspiration, and helps create strong community bonds.

If you were unable to make it to Fairmont’s fundraiser, you can still help make wishes come true for young ones to come.

World Wish Day on Monday is a chance for you to donate dollars or airline miles to fund airline tickets for wishes that involve travel.

“So many of our wishes require airline miles,” said Marian Silverstein, president and CEO of Make-A-Wish Foundation of Northern West Virginia. “We want the community to understand that with travel expenses, we need these miles.

“Air travel is a critical resource as we work to grant the heartfelt — and oftentimes very creative — wishes of children with life­-threatening medical conditions.

“Donating airline miles or dol­lars will allow us to continue cre­ating thousands of lasting moments for children with life-­threatening medical conditions.”

On Monday, you can visit www.nwestva.wish.org or www.wish.org/tickets to donate dollars or frequent flier miles.

WWE star John Cena will per­sonally match every frequent flier mile donated in April, up to 4.5 million. United Airlines will also support World Wish Day by matching the donations of its MileagePlus members, up to 3 million miles, through April 30.

So donate those miles and dollars to make wishes come true. With all of the grown-up conversations and hospital stays and painful procedures, little ones like Reilly deserve the chance to leave it all behind and be a princess for a day.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • COLUMN: Freedom of Information — if you can pay

    Several years ago, I made a Freedom of Information request to a local government agency. Within the five business days, as required by law, a packet of information was delivered to the office. I expected a bill, as most government offices have a charge that ranges from 25 cents to $1.25 per page for copies of the documents we request.

    April 20, 2014

  • The reassuring spirit of Easter: One of new hope and beginnings

    During the sub-zero and snow-filled months of winter, we maintained a spirit of hope that spring was on the way. It has now become a reality as all nature stretches and yawns and awakens once more to a new beginning. The fragrance of spring awakens our waiting nostrils, the budding beauty of new life brightens our eyes, and the reassuring idea of renewal stimulates our minds.

    April 20, 2014

  • Unsung heroes handling calls in emergencies are appreciated

    Thankfully, we live in a community where help is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, just by dialing three numbers — 9-1-1.
    During this week, which is recognized as National Public Safety Tele-Communicator’s Week nationwide, we need to remember that on the other end of that line are the men and women here in this county who are always there in case of accident, crimes, medical emergencies and any other catastrophic event.

    April 18, 2014

  • Message to ‘buckle up and park the phone’ is saving lives

    A figure that we haven’t seen that much in recent years is the highway death toll for a given period.
    Is the death toll up, down or just about the same as it was?
    The West Virginia Southern Regional Highway Safety Program has announced there were 325 highway fatalities in 2013, the second-lowest number on record.

    April 17, 2014

  • State native Burwell can ‘deliver results’ as Health and Human Services secretary

    Sylvia Mathews Burwell might not be a name with which most people are immediately familiar.
    For the past year, she has run the budget office under President Barack Obama.
    Prior to that, she served as president of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Global Development Program and later the Wal-Mart Foundation.

    April 16, 2014

  • Marion scores well in recent health report but could do better

    When it comes to area-wide studies, especially on health, there’s usually good news and bad news.
    So was the recent report on the health of America’s counties released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation recently. The nationwide county study evaluated health outcomes and health factors, and ranked counties accordingly.

    April 13, 2014

  • COLUMN: ‘Instant’ news not always reliable

    Instant.
    That little word has a pretty big meaning. With origins that date back to the 15th century, it means urgent, current, immediate.
    But think about how that word has developed over the past few decades.
    Instant pudding. Instead of slaving over a hot stove for a few minutes, you can now pour cold milk and with a bit of stirring, instant pudding!

    April 13, 2014

  • Decision to be an organ donor can save lives

    Chelsea Clair watched as her father died waiting for a bone marrow transplant.
    So when she met Kyle Froelich at a car show in 2009 and heard about his struggles to find a kidney that would match his unique needs, she never hesitated to offer hers to the man she just met.

    April 11, 2014

  • Volunteers continue to have priceless impact on community

    Chances are, you know someone who volunteers. Perhaps you’re a volunteer yourself.
    Marion County is full of volunteers.
    They read to our youth.
    They assist nonprofit agencies.
    They serve on boards and committees.
    And in 2013, they spent a day picking up nearly 10 tons of garbage that had been tossed out on public property around Marion County.

    April 10, 2014

  • Proposed school calendar lives up to letter and spirit of law

    West Virginia state law requires that students be in a classroom for 180 days.

    April 9, 2014

Featured Ads
NDN Politics
House Ads