GLENDORA, Calif. (Feb. 18, 2015): A 4-year-old from Glendora, CA, recently had his dream come true when Kids Wish Network granted his wish to visit Legoland and the rest of the California theme parks. Wish Kid Gavin Gonzalez has struggled daily with multiple medical issues since his premature birth but now has other, happy memories to think of besides hospitals visits.
“It was an experience we will never forget,” said Gavin’s mom, Rebecca Gonzalez.
Gavin’s memories of hospital visits began as an infant. He wasn’t hitting developmental milestones, couldn’t keep food down, and developed tremors. While searching for answers, Gavin was diagnosed with intermittent exotropia, an eye condition that is common in children with cerebral palsy, just after his second birthday. Finally, all of Gavin’s symptoms fit together.
An MRI in August 2012 confirmed it; Gavin was diagnosed with ataxic dyskinetic cerebral palsy, an extremely rare form of the disease that only affects 10 percent of people afflicted. Tests also revealed that Gavin suffered from a genetic disorder similar to Hunter-Mcapline syndrome, but that is so rare, there isn’t a name for it yet. Then Gavin was diagnosed with epilepsy, yet another life-threatening illness.
Gavin still undergoes frequent tests to determine the specifics of his genetic disorder.
“Not knowing what the future holds for my son is an extremely difficult thing to come to terms with,” adds Rebecca.
Yet despite dealing with these life-threatening issues, Gavin loves to go to school, play with his friends and be the center of attention. One of his favorite pastimes is playing with LEGOS, and Gavin couldn’t wait to see life-sized LEGOS on his wish trip.
Visiting Legoland was just part of the adventure put together by Kids Wish Network. Gavin and his family had a fun-filled trip at the California theme parks including Disneyland and California Adventure as well. Gavin went on all the “big boy” rides and loved meeting Mickey Mouse and the “Frozen” princesses in real life.
“Gavin had an amazing time,” said Rebecca. “From the bottom of my heart, thank you Kids Wish Network for an amazing trip and for the wonderful memories. We are truly blessed.”
Kids Wish Network would like to thank all of the generous Guardian Angel sponsors that helped make Gavin’s trip a once-in-a-lifetime experience: Peppertree Hotel, Compassion Partners Program, Legoland, California Pizza Kitchen, Olive Garden, Discovery Cube Science Foundation, and Benjies Deli.
Gavin continues to struggle against his life-threatening illnesses but doesn’t let them damper his fun-loving spirit.
Kids Wish Network is a nationwide charitable organization dedicated to infusing hope, creating happy memories, and improving the quality of life for children having experienced life-altering situations. Visit www.kidswishnetwork.org to learn more and find out how you can help makes dreams come true and sponsor a wish for a deserving child.