Raul has vision of commanding a drum corps on the gridiron. He wants his high school marching band to hit the notes in a synchrony of percussion rhythm. But there’s one problem. They are using aging equipment that just doesn’t sound right.
Diagnosed with a life-threatening kidney disease and eligible for a wish, Raul asked Make-A-Wish® Orange County and Inland Empire to replace his school’s percussion equipment.
Wish granter, Jim Reed, wanted this self-less kid to have an extraordinary wish experience. Reed knew Raul admired Scott Johnson – percussion director of the prestigious Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps.
So when Reed and the Make-A-Wish team arranged for the drum wish they knew there was no one better to help Raul pick the instruments than Johnson.
While Raul tests out gear for his band at his favorite music store Johnson suddenly appears.
Even though Johnson constantly travels around the world teaching percussion, he flew in to meet this amazing wish kid. Johnson gives Raul a lesson and enjoys lunch with his family.
But Johnson wasn’t done making Raul’s wish experience incredible. He knew Raul had never seen the Blue Devils in person, so he invites Johnson and his family to a performance in Riverside, California. He even gives Raul a staff pass, so they could visit again before the show.
“It was the first time I had ever done anything like that,” Johnson tells the Concord Transcript.
And thanks to this wish kid and Make-A-Wish sponsors, his school band is now enjoying three sets each of Pearl tenor snare and bass drums. Raul also receives an extra surprise: his own drum set.
Volunteer Reed was impressed that Raul thought his classmates first.