Make-A-Wish club grants wish


Jackie Crislip

Raegan beams from ear to ear as she receives her autograph book for her trip to Disney World from the Make-A-Wish club.

With a gap-tooth smile and swinging braids,7-year old Raegan was surprised with a pair of Mickey Mouse ears and a trip to the most magical place on Earth Disney World. The White Station Make-A-Wish Club sponsored Raegan’s wish and held a wish-granting ceremony for the family in the school library on Sept. 9. 

With balloons, cupcakes and pink suitcases, the club sent Raegan and her family off on Raegan’s dream vacation.

“She looked a little bit nervous. We told her what was going on, and you could just watch this smile spread across her face,” club officer Vance Gieselmann (11) said. “It was so cute. It was so sweet. She was so excited.”

In order to grant a wish to a terminally ill child, the White Station Make-A-Wish Club  fundraised $5,000 after countless coin drives, car washes and spirit nights over the last year.  The club has granted a total of nine wishes since the WSHS chapter began 10 years ago.

“It’s such a cool thing to be able to do that for a little kid and their family, and it just makes you want to work even harder in the club this year so that we can grant another wish,” Gieselmann said. 

The mission of Make-A-Wish has a special place in club sponsor Sandie Whittington’s heart. The Make-A-Wish foundation sent Whittington’s own daughter, who had leukemia and was a St. Jude patient, to Disney World. 

“It just brought back memories of my own little girl,” said Whittingon. “I’m glad when the kids pick Disney World because that’s just the trip of a lifetime for a little kid.”

Members of the Make-A-Wish Club agree that the experience of meeting Raegan went beyond their expectations and impacted them on a deeper level. 

“When I saw that stunned look on her face when she found out that her wish of going to Disney World was granted, I almost cried,” Abbye Freidman (11) said. “It made me so happy.”