Below, buildings drifted by and shrunk in size. Above, the helicopter’s rotor cut through the air in rapid swipes.
Brandon peered out the window. This was not his first helicopter ride.
For Brandon, life with renal failure meant exhausting treatments, daily stress and, at one point, a medical airlift. But he was too excited to worry about the pain and fright from those days. Too caught up in the enjoyment of his wish – today I am a hero … today I am a firefighter.
The helicopter ride was only part of the experience.
To start the day off, Brandon received his uniform and turnouts, the heavy outerwear that protects firefighters from heat and smoke. Brandon climbed aboard one of the trucks and went for a ride. This is where he first bonded with the engine company that would guide for a ride. This is where he first bonded with the engine company that would guide him during the ultimate moment of the wish – the chance to fight a fire.
A car was ablaze not far from a crowd of bystanders. Together, Brandon and the crew quelled the flames. It wasn’t an easy task, but the team succeeded – and then it was high-fives all around for a job well done.
The crowd cheered for Brandon. His family looked on with pride – including his uncle, Brandon’s future kidney donor. They knew that Brandon’s wish, his day to be a hero, was a celebration of his strength and his will to get better.
Wishes like Brandon’s are possible thanks to Macy's generous support. In 2012, Macy’s Thanks for Sharing and Believe campaigns generated more than $9.8 million for Make-A-Wish, bringing Macy's total support to $62 million since 2003. Thank you, Macy’s – together we change the lives of wish kids and their families, forever - and move closer to granting the wish of every eligible child.
Brandon's wish was featured on ABC's Good Morning America
as part of Macy's National Believe Day celebration in 2012.