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A Wish Takes Flight and Lands in Happiness

September 7, 2018

Sometimes, something magical happens when you make a wish. Dreams can come true.

That’s exactly what 7-year-old Dillon, a patient at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, TN, found out when he made a wish.

With the help of several FedEx pilots and the Mid-South Chapter of Make-A-Wish Foundation, Dillon traveled to Disney World—the “Happiest Place on Earth”— with his grandmother, great-grandmother and cousin.

When we talked to him in July at his Wish Reveal, Dillon was excited about the upcoming journey. “I want to see Mickey Mouse and Spiderman,” said the smiling, front-teeth-missing Dillon “And, I want to see Batman beat up the Joker.”

Granting a Wish

Pilots and DillonIn December, new FedEx employees joined forces with the local Make-A-Wish organization. For several months, they raised funds to make some child’s dream come true.

“We wanted to give money to Make-A-Wish in order to help children with severe illnesses,” said Charlotte Gray, FedEx Express New Hire Pilots Flight Course Development Administrator and organizer for the Wish Reveal. “St. Jude is a wonderful place and what better way to help kids and the community. Wishes cost $8,000, and we were thrilled and excited to be able to grant a wish.”

Flying with Mickey

To make the Wish Reveal even more special and to give Dillon a one-of-a-kind experience, Captain Ray Para took him on a “flight” in one of the FedEx flight simulators.

“Dillon knew he was flying somewhere in August, but he didn’t know it was his wish,” said Gray. “His grandmother told him he was coming to FedEx to ‘practice’ flying in an airplane for the first time.”

Captain Para helped Dillon sit in the cockpit of a 767 simulator. At the end of the flight, Captain Para asked Dillon if he knew where he was going, and Dillon said no.

“So, I put up a graphic of Mickey Mouse on the simulator visuals with a message that said, ‘Hi, Dillon. See you soon!’ ” Captain Para said.

After leaving the simulator, Dillon made his way downstairs to the reception where he was cheered on by more than 200 FedEx employees who were dressed for the occasion. They wore Mickey and Minnie hats. Some even wore Disney costumes while others carried hand-made signs with messages like “Magic Happens,” “When You Wish Upon a Star,” and “Dreams Come True.”

The surprises kept coming. Employees also presented Dillon with swimming trunks, sunglasses, games, backpacks, luggage and more for his trip.

Magical Moments Create Smiles of Joy

“I’ve never seen such an expression of pure joy on Dillon’s face when he came out of the simulator,” said Tiffany O’Connor, FedEx Express Assistant Chief Pilot. “And he walked into a hallway lined with hundreds of FedEx team members.”

Brooke Ehrhart, Vice President of Development at Make-A-Wish Mid-South, agreed.

“Dillon’s wish was absolutely incredible! We can’t thank the FedEx team enough for all you did to ensure this was a day his family will never forget,” Ehrhart said. “The looks on his face were priceless, and that’s because of your generosity!”


Comments

    Shuichi SATO says:

    Great story! Great people!!

    Charlotte says:

    So inspiring!!! Coming together for one purpose to make a wish come true!! Love it!!

    Bobbie Crumbley says:

    WoW!!! I could stop the tears from flowing to know that FedEx has such a big heart of commitment to its’ marketplace, business and social.

    I still remember the tear jerking story about the little girl who needed a kidney and had to be in surgery the next morning in another state. There was no commercial flights available to meet this need. Someone called St Jude and FedEx made it happen. Real life events like these makes me proud to be a FedEx employee. Thank you FedEx for keeping the World on time!!!

    Felicia Tagivakatini says:

    Thank you all for the wonderful Fedex moment and making a wish come true!!!!!!!

    Judy A. Young says:

    This Young Man/Dillon Made My Day. I needed to see this today to remind me things can be a whole lot worst. Prayers Dillon will Beat this Disease with a Full recover. Great Story FedEx You Showed Up and Represented. #TeamFedex

    Torria Pollard says:

    That was such a wonderful day to see little Dillon smile and enjoy all of his gifts from FedEx!!

    Sara Haley says:

    Annndddd now I am crying at my desk! So wonderful! Thank you FedEx Flight Ops!

    Leela Badlani says:

    So happy we could fulfill his wish.

    Mohammad Alyousef says:

    Awesome!

    C Price says:

    OH WOW! This just touched my heart, soul and spirit, It’s things like this that make me so PROUD to work for FedEx.

    Marilyn M says:

    So happy!! I can’t stop the tears from falling.

    Marilyn M. says:

    This really touched my heart and could not stop the tears from falling.

    Veronica says:

    WOW, Thanks for caring about other.

    Tawana Brinson-Retic says:

    Love this keep up the good work!! This touched my heart & I’m proud to work for a company that gives back.

    David Moeslein says:

    Glad to see FedEx involved with Make-A-Wish.

    Carrie Gueutal says:

    Way to go Fedex !!!!
    You are a beautiful little guy Dillon <3

    shavee thompson says:

    DREAMS DO COME TRUE!

    THANKS FEDEX!!

    elias nammour says:

    Stories like this make me feel proud to work for Fedex..God bless all the children

    German Bravo says:

    Makes me proud to be part of FedEx. Thanks for giving back to the community.

    Douglas Evitt says:

    Makes me proud to be an employee of FedEx when I read stories like this. Well done FedEx!

    Verona Floyd says:

    At a lost for words. Just a reminder that there are still good people in the world. Lets continue to pay it forward. God Bless Dillon

    George Mathew says:

    If there is one thing I know about FedEx, is that this is a Company which gives back to the Community. God bless this Great Company

    Lynda Gray says:

    Such a heart warming story. Thanks to all of the unsung heroes at FedEx who consistently help to make this and so much more possible. You’re impacting lives. As a former employee you make me proud to say, I still bleed purple.
    Thanks family…

    Monica McMorise says:

    I am such a noodle right now because I’m sitting at my desk tearing up while reading this beautiful story. Thanks guys for sharing the love with Dillon.

    sudeep ghosh says:

    Magical moments creates smiles of joy

    Nadine Myles says:

    Tears of JOY, filled my heart. FEDEX is a GREAT company to work for.

    Josephine Harveymoore says:

    Tears of filled my eyes, great job guys, FedEx is one in a millions and a
    great company to work for. keep up the good work.

    Nicholaus McNeal says:

    Wonderful read! Thank you for sharing!

    Faezah says:

    Rainbow of pure joy

    Triy says:

    Very Awesome article.

    LOU DEMEO says:

    as a retired employee of FED/EX.all I can say is I remember getting a letter instead of a pay check and I stood tall with FRED SMITH and we all stuck together and believed FREDS dream would come true I hope and pray that is all 425000 of you do FREDS DREAM CAME TRUE and he is truly one of the most generous people you will meet he changed the world we had a desalt falcon flying at the time one of our employees wife’s needed to be flown to mayo clinic with a doctor at her side FRED had her put on the falcon and flew her to mayo.GOD bless FRED to all you new employees stick with him AMEN..

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