This brave teen’s adventure to meet his music idols began soon after being diagnosed as having a juvenile nasopharyngeal angiofibroma tumor. This extremely aggressive tumor had wrapped itself around Justin’s carotid artery. It was also found behind his left eye, left cheek, sinus cavity, and inside his cranium.
When asked for his number one wish, Justin knew just what he wanted most. He wanted to meet the members of his favorite band, Lonestar, in person!
Justin’s exciting wish began soon after arriving in Salamanca, New York. Justin’s KWN wish coordinator had arranged for tickets to a Lonestar concert and a special meet and greet with the band. The family was ferried to the concert in a sleek limousine where a slightly jittery Justin prepared to meet his idols in person before the show.
During the meet and greet, Justin presented each band member with a Kids Wish Network Guardian Angel coin and beaded bracelets. According to Justin’s mom, “The bracelets all spelled out ‘Miracles Happen’ and each one had 16 beads,” she said. “Each bead represented the 16 hours Justin spent in surgery. All of the band wore them for the concert.”
After chatting for a while and getting to know each other, the group parted ways when the band was due onstage. Justin and his family took their front row seats and settled in to enjoy the show. Little did Justin know what was in store next.
After about five minutes, the band’s manager came over asked Justin’s parents if it was okay to pull the teen up on stage. After about the fifth song, the band called him up to present him with a bass guitar that they all then signed.
After the show, the band met back up with Justin and they all hung out on the tour bus for a while. Lead singer, Richie McDonald, had learned during their first meeting that music-loving Justin had played the baritone. Since surgery, however, he was now unable to; that was why the band had collectively decided to give him the bass. Richie also wanted to give Justin a jumpstart on learning to play it. He insisted on buying Justin an amp and a tuner and later made the arrangements for lessons at a music store in Justin’s area.
Justin’s wish was unbelievable; Justin’s mother said that “the next morning after coming home, Justin got up and ran in and looked at me and said, ‘Okay, it wasn’t a dream!’ The whole thing was just phenomenal! I know it’s something he’ll never, ever forget!”