Thursday March 26, 2015
Members of the South Burlington Police and Fire Departments gathered recently at Tilt Arcade and Ale House in South Burlington to surprise eight-year-old Wish Kid Noah with the news that his wish to visit the Los Angeles Police and Fire Departments is coming true. Noah, a resident of St. George, was born with a rare condition called VACTERL Association, a disorder that affects his internal organs and requires a great number of surgeries. Later this month, Make-A-Wish Vermont will fly Noah and his family to Los Angeles, California where he will be a special guest of LA’s Police and Fire Departments.
Tilt Arcade and Ale House was the perfect location for Noah’s big surprise. Like most eight-year-old boys, he is a huge fan of video and arcade games and Tilt was happy to host the event. South Burlington police officers and firefighters were thrilled to help share the news with Noah. According to Make-A-Wish Marketing and Outreach Coordinator Rosalind Saunders, Fire Captain Gary Rounds told Local 22 & Local 44 News that he knows the trip to L.A. will be a nice break from those hospital visits. “I had a son that received a Make-A-Wish back in ‘89,” said Captain Rounds. Before heading out west, Captain Rounds and his crew gave Noah a little training. “He’s got to grow a little bit but he looked good in the fire gear and the fire hat, and he’s not afraid of the fire truck. Some kids are a little hesitant but he wasn’t, so that’s a great start,” said Captain Rounds.
Noah’s mother, Amy, reported that for many years Noah has been “fascinated with ambulances and fire trucks and police, so we weren’t surprised he had a rescue related wish.” Amy spoke of her son’s condition, “He had his first surgery the day that he was born. He was in the hospital for about five and a half months, and since that time, he has had 23 additional surgeries. He’s certainty gone through a lot.”
Make-A-Wish Vermont, based in South Burlington, grants the wishes of Vermont children with life-threatening medical conditions, approximately 38 wishes each year. Wish trips like Noah’s are completely free for the wish families and made possible through volunteers and donations. Since approximately 88 percent of all Vermont wishes are travel wishes, donations of Frequent Flier miles are also accepted to help Vermont Wish Kids take flight. Since 1989, Make-A-Wish Vermont has granted the wish of every medically eligible Vermont child referred to them, more than 700 wishes in total.