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Ella's Disney Cruise


“ The wish experience is one of the greatest things we have done as a family and probably will ever do. ”

- Mom

Ella is a sweet five year old girl from Naperville who loves playing with her baby dolls, being read to and having kitchen play time. According to Ella’s family, she is a little shy at first, but when given some time, she becomes a very funny and outgoing girl who truly brightens up a room.

In 2010 Ella was diagnosed with Anterior horn cell disease. Referred to Make-A-Wish by her school nurse, Ella and her family started discussing what she her wish might include.

 “She has always wanted to go to a real beach, but her wheelchair makes going to a beach everyday difficult,” Ella’s mom said. “However, when we brought up the idea of a Disney Cruise that included fun things and some beach days she was all for it."

This Spring, Ella and her family departed for her Disney Cruise. Once on their cruise, the family enjoyed swimming in the onboard pool, having fancy dinners, dressing like pirates and getting their hair braided. The fun did not stop there. Equipped with a special sand accessible wheelchair Ella was able to enjoy a few days on the beach in the Bahamas relaxing in the sun and taking a dip in the ocean. Last but not least, Ella was able to meet and swim with the dolphins.

Ella’s mom shared, “Seeing how happy my kids were the whole time was the best part. The wish gave us relief from life’s daily challenges that we could not have enjoyed on our own.”

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  • Allison West, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital - Central and Southern Illinois' Certified Child Life Specialist, has referred 28 children for a wish: a gift that can expand a child's concept of what they're able to do while battling their illness. Thanks to Allison for all that she does!

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  • Allison West, @StJude - Central and Southern Illinois' Certified Child Life Specialist, has referred 28 children fo…

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June 25, 2012 - 11:25 AM

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