Our lives are full of moments of impact. It is what we do with the impact that shapes molds us into the person we will become.
For Sterling, now 17, a moment of impact that has helped him to become the strong and optimistic young man he is today - his wish to be the President of the United States of America for a day.
It all began several years ago when Sterling’s father Michael noticed that Sterling’s neck was starting to expand. A father’s concern resulted in Sterling’s diagnosis of T-cell lymphoma. Despite the cancer and the treatment, Sterling had a wish that had power beyond any prescription. His Make-A-Wish® experience helped mold Sterling into the man he is and will become.
Secret Service escorts, presidential transportation, civil responsibilities and meet-and-greets were just part of the job for the then 11-year-old wish kid.
Sterling recalls, “seeing the Arlington Cemetery and seeing all the militia that had served in the army and giving their lives to make sure we stay a free nation and to let us have the freedom to have opportunities to achieve greatness and beyond.” It was through the once-in-a-lifetime experience to lay the wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier that has had the most influence on Sterling throughout his wish experience.
His wish gave him the freedom to envision opportunities to achieve greatness. Today, Sterling is determined and strong. He is optimistic outlook. He believes in “the good things, and by the good I mean just the little things in life, and how they inspire you to be the best you can be …”
Sterling’s future is bright and promising. As he enters his senior year of high school, he hopes to use his optimism to make his mark on the lives of others. His ambition has his energy focused into becoming a good-natured man, being polite and giving some money to the little charities. His optimism and compassion have already started to change those around him – especially his family, who Sterling calls a blessing.
And to those who get the chance to meet Sterling, and other brave kids like him, it creates a ripple effect. Spreading these life-defining moments of impact and changing our lives in the process.
Read more about Sterling's wish experience