He is the most popular and prolific celebrity wish granter in Make-A-Wish history, having granted 580 wishes throughout his career. This is in addition to hosting countless luncheons for Wish Kids over WrestleMania weekend or seeking out Wish Kids backstage when they're meeting other WWE stars.
In December 2018, John Cena received the Sports Illustrated Muhammad Ali Legacy Award. This award is given for outstanding athletic achievement as well as strength of character. Many know Cena for winning 16 world championships in wrestling. But his community achievements are no less impressive. He has lent his fame to antibullying and cancer-awareness campaigns and spends time visiting active and wounded troops in addition to his work with Make-A-Wish.
Cena’s passion for working with kids came about after he won the WWE’s champion title in 2005. He realized the power that his character, both in the WWE and in real life, could have on his young fans. Against the advice of his colleagues, he slowly morphed his wrestling persona away from the wisecracking, villainous rapper he began with. After becoming champion, he used language to promote hope, optimism and perseverance, and focused on motivating his young fans. His mantra “Never Give Up” resonates deeply with wish kids, providing inspiration, encouragement and strength.
Click for the full Sports Illustrated article to learn more about superstar John Cena and his well-deserved Muhammad Ali Legacy Award!