Ask a little boy what he wants to be when he grows up and often you will get answers like policeman, astronaut, maybe even Superman. Jonathan
is no different, and thanks to Make-A-Wish®
, he didn't have to wait to grow up to have his dream to become a fireman come true. Diagnosed with a rare and uncontrolled form of epilepsy, 5-year-old Jonathan and his family have frequently received the care of firemen and first responders. Jonathan's mother, Rebecca, remembers, "every time they would come to the house, he would say, 'I want to be a firefighter, too; I like to help people.'”
When Jonathan’s wish granters asked him what his greatest wish would be there was no doubt in the little boy’s mind. Jonathan wished to be a firefighter. The outpouring of love and support from Jonathan’s local fire company and those who came from miles away to be a part of this unique and special wish, was overwhelming.
A surprise presentation was set up at Jonathan’s school the day before his wish was to be granted. The local Fire Chief and his crew stopped by to present Jonathan with his own fire pager. Jonathan was officially proclaimed a member of their fire company and told that he had to be ready to respond at a moment’s notice to help his fellow firefighters. The next day, when the pager went off, a procession of fire fighting and law enforcement vehicles a mile long was outside his house, waiting to take Jonathan to the firehouse. Jonathan helped battle a blaze in a safe smoke house and successfully rescued a Dalmatian. After completion of his heroic rescue efforts, Jonathan spent the rest of the day touring the firehouse and exploring the varied vehicles and equipment. That same evening, Jonathan was honored at the Firefighter’s Annual Dinner where he was awarded his official badge and named al lifetime member of his local fire department (and several others.)
Since his wish, Jonathan has attempted to wear his uniform to school several times, only to be sent back to his room by his mom to change quickly so he wouldn’t miss the school bus. His parents say he smiles more now than before his wish came true and he seems much more confident. Now, each time he hears a siren he tells his Mom he needs to go and help his fellow fire fighters. This wish experience was so much more than just one day of fun - it brought a family and a community closer together and the memory still brings a huge smile to one little boy who will never ever forget that he is and will always be a true firefighter.
Wish-granting volunteers: Binoy George & Nicole Belliotti
Wish story writer: Tina Chaudhry