GREENFIELD, Wis. (Feb. 25, 2015): For 7-year-old Olivia Wiltzius of Greenfield, WI, visiting the doctor or having life-saving treatments is a common occurrence. Diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia when just 2 years old, Olivia underwent 2 ½ years of harrowing treatment. But, thanks to children’s charity Kids Wish Network, Olivia enjoyed a once-in-a-lifetime wish trip to Disney World.
“Olivia’s dream came true,” says her mom, Julie Wiltzius. “Thank you so very much Kids Wish Network for granting Olivia’s wish to Disney.”
Olivia may have been all smiles during her trip, but she’s already faced a lot of struggles. Diagnosed at birth with Down syndrome, Olivia was a very healthy child until she suddenly developed a dangerously high fever. While the first tests doctors conducted were inconclusive, inflammation in Olivia’s abdomen warranted a second look. She was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in July 2009 and started treatment immediately, enduring six months of intensive chemotherapy.
“Olivia endured years of agonizing treatments and illnesses that at times left her little body lifeless,” recalls Wiltzius.
Olivia’s cancer responded quickly to the harrowing treatments, and she was declared in remission. She’s had two years of close monitoring and still undergoes regular scans and blood work to check for signs of the cancer returning. Despite all she’s experienced, Olivia is an extremely positive and happy young lady who loves the Disney Princesses and playing dress up.
Kids Wish Network sent Olivia and her family on a magical adventure to Disney World where Olivia’s dream to meet Disney Princesses came true. The family stayed at luxury accommodations, dined at specially-selected restaurants, and enjoyed its time together.
Olivia loved kissing Mickey Mouse and having her very own princess makeover from Orlando-based company Butterfly Dreams.
“Olivia’s wish will be memories we will all share and cherish for a lifetime,” adds Wiltzius.
Kids Wish Network would like to thank all the generous Guardian Angel sponsors that helped make Olivia’s experience unforgettable: LongHorn Steakhouse, Bahama Breeze, Portobello’s Italian Restaurant, BJ’s Restaurant, WonderWorks, Compassion Partners Program, Clarion Inn Lake Buena Vista, National Car Rental, Butterfly Dreams, and Maria, a senior at West Salem High School in Wisconsin.
Olivia still receives regular check-ups but is looking forward to celebrating her 8th birthday at the end of the March.
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.