Jade is a 8-year-old girl from the southern Illinois town of Pleasant Hill. Jade is described by friends and family as “amazing, strong, quite popular and magnetic.”
Jade was diagnosed in May of 2013 with a hematologic disorder and receives chemo-treatments. Referred to Make-A-Wish through a close family member, Jade’s wish came true when she was able to go to Disney World for a week and meet her favorite princesses. Jade explained that she “loved all the rides!” and “that her favorite was Space Mountain”. She said the trip “was a lot of fun!” Accompanying her were her mom, dad and two siblings. Jade and her family lodged at Give Kids the World in Orlando, Florida.
Throughout her treatment and wish process, Jade’s thoughtfulness and generous spirit shined bright as she thought about the other kids being treated at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.
Jennifer, Jade’s mother, said that she and her daughter were driving home from an appointment one day and Jade had made a comment to her that the toy chest at the hospital was low and they needed to fill it up.” That is when they came up with the idea to host a toy drive. The thought process was we are going to collect as many toys as they could and on Jade’s last day of chemo-therapy they would go and distribute the toys to the kids in the Children’s Hospital. When they got home Jenny went to a local school and asked for their participation, when they agreed she went to another and as she said “it pretty much spread like wild fire. The whole community was extremely involved.”
Jade’s toy drive was a great success and everything seemed to be going well as she finished her treatments and went on her wish.
Sadly, shortly after they returned home from Jade’s wish, the family’s house burnt down and they lost everything. Jennifer said it was “pretty devastating, but trust me we’ve been through worse.”
Jade’s mom was very touched that Make-A-Wish went above in beyond in replacing Jade’s souvenirs and pictures from her wish that were destroyed in the fire. , Cheri Skiles, Jade’s Make-A-Wish volunteer wish granter contacted Disney and they were able to replace what was lost and she made a scrapbook for Jade and the family.
“We cannot thank this foundation enough for what they did for our daughter and our family,“ Jennifer said of her experience with Make-A-Wish.