How one company helps kids’ wishes come true
(BPT) – It’s a parent’s worst nightmare: a call from your child’s school to say there’s been an accident, and you need to come to the hospital right away.
That’s what happened when Noah was just 10 years old. While swimming with other kids at school, he appeared to suddenly faint in the water. Fortunately, the swimming coach acted quickly. Although Noah’s heart actually stopped beating, a local police officer happened to be in the school that day checking their emergency defibrillators, and an ambulance was sitting outside the school. Those circumstances helped prevent a tragedy for Noah and his family.
Doctors and nurses at the hospital quickly recognized what was wrong with Noah — a condition called Long QT syndrome (LQTS), also referred to as “prolonged QT.” Long QT is caused by a genetic mutation which affects the heart rhythm, and it tends to run in families. Those who suffer from LQTS can have irregular heartbeats — prolonged and/or fast, chaotic heartbeats. This condition may trigger fainting, seizures, heart attacks and even sudden death.
Since the incident in the pool that day, Noah has suffered from additional heart attacks, and underwent surgery to implant two defibrillators. Now 20 years old, he still suffers from critical side effects and receives lifesaving treatment at Children’s Heart Center at Strong in Rochester, New York. Due to his illness, he was enrolled in the Make-A-Wish program as a child — which recently surprised him with his wish by transforming his truck.
When he’s not receiving treatments at the hospital, Noah enjoys creating music and studies automotive mechanics in hopes of becoming a trained mechanic. It was no surprise when Noah wished for a transformation to his truck. His fulfilled wish includes a lift, a grill, a sound system, rims and new tires.
A car parade was organized with Noah’s family and friends to reveal his long-awaited truck makeover. Noah’s hero — the coach who pulled him from the pool — along with the police officer who was there that day when he nearly died at the age of 10, stood by for the reveal when Noah received keys to his revamped truck.
Make-A-Wish is able to fulfill the wishes of children and teens suffering from critical illnesses every day, thanks to contributions from individuals and businesses nationwide. In East Aurora, New York, Noah’s truck transformation was made possible by Make-A-Wish Western New York and generous donations from Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, one of the largest heating and air conditioning service companies, with 89 locations across 29 U.S. states and 3 Canadian provinces.
Service Experts has been actively involved in fundraising efforts for the past two years to make a difference in the lives of children suffering from serious illnesses. As a team, they have hosted an array of creative fundraising efforts — ranging from company-wide Bowl-A-Thons, raffles and T-shirt sales to local events like dunking booths, yard sales and snack stores. Some team members have volunteered as wish granters to help kids identify their one true wish. Others have donated money and encouraged friends and family to do the same.
For over two years, the company has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to support Make-A-Wish, and they proudly relate the stories of children they’ve helped on their website.
“Our 3,600 employees play a significant role in our commitment to Make-A-Wish,” said Matt Kulik, general manager, Sunbeam Service Experts. “It is an opportunity for us to give back to the communities that we live and work in.”
To learn about the wish children helped by Service Experts and to contribute to their cause, visit ServiceExperts.com/TrueWishes.