The Green Monster looms behind like something out of William’s dreams. He steps onto the mound at Fenway Park … a baseball in his hand, triumph in his heart.
William is on the mound because, months earlier, he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma … a baseball-sized tumor wrapped around his heart. He started chemotherapy and had surgery to remove his spleen.
William’s doctors knew there was something else that could help him. They referred him to Make-A-Wish® so he could experience the emotional healing and optimism of having his wish come true. From his first visit with Make-A-Wish volunteers, William could look forward to something.
The journey to Fenway’s mound also involved bonding with his twin sister and older brother. William turned to them for ideas, and they spent days exploring their imaginations – and not thinking about the fear and worry of William’s fight against lymphoma. They helped lead him to his wish to throw out the first pitch at Fenway Park.
But today, it’s just William before the Fenway faithful. Just him, and the buzz of everything that’s happened today – meeting Red Sox stars and management, the feel of his crisp new jersey, the unmistakable smell of baseball in the air.
William holds the baseball in his left hand. He realizes it’s about the same size as the tumor that changed his life and put his family through so much torment. He hurls it toward Sox slugger David Ortiz, 90 feet away behind home plate.
Thirty-thousand baseball fans cheer. William raises his arms. He’ll never forget all he endured – but now, he begins to draw strength from it. In his wish, he finds an experience that makes him better … in every possible way.