8-year-old Sadie (second from left) loves to sing, dance and eat cherry pie! She was born with congenital heart defects and has had six heart operations and brain surgery. Sadie hasn’t had the chance to spend time with other kids who have gone through similar health challenges. So, she chose to share her wish with 30 other children who have also had surgeries.
She wanted them all to know that they are warriors, just like her, by hosting an Ultimate Ninja Warrior Competition. The incredible team at Ultimate Gymnastic Gurnee stepped up to turn Sadie’s wish vision into reality. They transformed their gym into a real-life ninja warrior course.
Family, friends and volunteers cheered on the little warriors as they conquered the course one obstacle at a time! Wish mom Lora was there to cheer on her son Chance who was invited to participate in the competition. She shared that she had “never been around so much strength and bravery.”
One of Sadie’s doctors at Advocate Children’s Hospital, Dr. Andrew Van Bergen, came out to be a part of her wish day. He shared that the “limitless opportunities that Make-A-Wish provides” are “an incredible asset to all of [the] care programs at the hospital.”
It was a wish day full of running, climbing and falling… and every child made it across the finish line with a smile on their face!
Sadie's mother, Rene, shared with the Chicago Tribune that "[Sadie] found out how much fun it was to run the course and have all the kids come up and hug her. Seeing how much the [other children] enjoyed it was like double [reward], for her."