HIGHLAND, Utah (ABC4 Utah) – Experiencing pain is something a Utah County family knows all about. Compared to the rest of us, they’ve had at least twice the opportunity, but Make-A-Wish Utah wants to change that. They’re also helping them feel twice the joy.
Today the Call family in Highland, Utah knows the sound of simple joy.
“And what about your under water sound?” asked Rebecca Call, mother.
“Gurgle, gurgle,” said Jared Call.
Their 10 year old son Jared and 14 year old daughter Alyssa have a lot to smile about, but their journey to get here has been a struggle.
“You always joke it isn't brain surgery, well for us, it was brain surgery, twice,” said Jeff Call, father.
The Calls are one of a handful of Utah families with two Make-A-Wish kids. Jared was born with kidney failure, is autistic, hearing impaired and has club feet.
“He's been our little miracle baby, just truly a miracle,” said Rebecca.
And his sister Alyssa, at the age of 8, was diagnosed with severe epilepsy.
“After a couple of years the medicine didn't work anymore and she was having mass amounts of seizures, 5 to 10 seizures daily,” said Jeff.
Photos don’t quite capture the pain. Thankfully both have received successful surgeries that have improved their conditions. It’s just enough to give Make-A-Wish Utah the green light to give them a few happy days they’ll never forget.
“I’m here today because I made a wish to perform on Broadway,” said Alyssa Call.
Alyssa got to sing and dance, center stage in New York’s Broadway show “On the Town.”
“She had a grin on her face the entire time we were there,” said Rebecca.
And Make-A-Wish sent Jared & family to the "Happiest Place on Earth!"
“We're really focused on creating an experience that's the true heartfelt wish of a child,” said Kabi Catalano, Director of Development for MAWU.
Although it doesn’t take away their struggles or the pain, it brings joy back to their family.
“They're just incredible; they made my dreams come true,” said Alyssa, “What's your favorite thing about Mom?”
“Oh she's my favorite Mommy,” said Jared.
It’s just the things Make-A-Wish and the Call family love to hear.
“We just adore him and he makes us laugh and smile all the time,” said Rebecca.
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