Bonaire, GA – When nine-year-old Jacob of Bonaire was asked by Kids Wish Network Wish Coordinator, Jill, what he wanted most for his wish, this special little guy didn’t hesitate. A huge Star Wars fan, Jacob wanted to visit Skywalker Ranch, the ranch and workplace of Star Wars creator, George Lucas.
While visitors are very rarely permitted to visit the Skywalker Ranch, Jacob’s story was so moving that an extra special exception was made just for him. Jacob’s wish adventure to California began with a simple phone call.
Jacob’s aunt learned about Kids Wish Network, an organization that grants wishes to kids with life-threatening illnesses, after being contacted by one of the charity’s professional fundraisers. She immediately thought of Jacob and submitted his name. His mother, Heather, was hopeful at the prospect of Jacob getting a wish. After all that her brave son had been through, Heather desperately wanted Jacob to have something fun to look forward to.
In 2005, Jacob was diagnosed with Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Duchenne is one of the most progressive forms of muscular dystrophy and is characterized by extremely rapid deterioration of the muscles. Jacob is experiencing increasing difficulty with his mobility and relies on a motorized scooter and a wheelchair for long distances. He also attends frequent physical therapy sessions.
Once Jacob was approved for a wish with Kids Wish Network, he had to decide what he wanted. It wasn’t a tough decision for this special little Star Wars fan. He wanted to visit Skywalker Ranch.
Jacob’s Kids Wish Network Wish Coordinator, Jill, got right to work. She contacted Skywalker Ranch and was told that while they ordinarily do not provide tours and visits to the ranch, they would make an exception in Jacob’s case as his story was so touching.
Before Jacob knew it, he was on his way to California!
Jacob was greeted warmly by staff at the Skywalker Ranch who presented him with all sorts of gifts. After getting to know each other a little, they treated the family to tours of the main house, the Lucasfilm library and the Lucasfilm Archives where Jacob got to see the original props, models and costumes from the Star Wars and Indiana Jones movies. He even got to meet Matthew Wood, the voice of his favorite Star Wars character, General Grievous.
Jacob later enjoyed a tour of Skywalker Sound to see Mr. Lucas’ private theater and a tour of the Skywalker Ranch Firehouse. For any Star Wars fan, this was truly a dream come true!
Heather couldn’t say enough about Jacob’s experience. “It was an excellent time! Everyone at the ranch treated Jacob like a king. They were just awesome to him.” She was also grateful to Jill and Kids Wish Network for making it all happen. “Jill was wonderful. She did a wonderful job. This was definitely a trip of a lifetime for Jacob!”
Kids Wish Network would like to thank the following for helping to make Jacob’s wish extra special: Alcatraz Island, Amici’s San Rafael, Bay Helicoptours, City Sightseeing San Francisco, Dollar Rent A Car, Embassy Suites – San Fafael, Golden Gate Bridge Hwy & Transportation, Hiller Aviation Museum, Joe’s Crab Shack, Mojita Cocina Mexicana, Skywalker Ranch, Theresa and Johnny’s Comfort Food and West End Café.