Pasco News

Make-A-Wish sends boy on fishing expedition

Make-A-Wish of Central and Northern Florida granted the wish of a Pasco County child.

Justin, a child diagnosed with neuroblastoma, traveled to the Turks and Caicos islands this summer in a chain of islands near the Bahamas.

Every day, he and his family spent time snorkeling in the clear blue waters, Make-A-Wish spokeswoman Allison Buchanan reported.

An adventurous 9-year-old, Justin’s favorite part of his trip was a fishing expedition where he caught 11 fish in a row.

Justin attended the trip with his older brother, parents, grandparents, aunt, uncle and cousins.

Justin’s wish was in partnership with the student athletes at Saint Leo University as part of Make-A-Wish’s NCAA Division II national partnership.

Justin was diagnosed with Stage IV neuroblastoma at age 3, in June 2007. Neuroblastoma, a tumor of the nervous tissue, usually develops in young children.

During the past seven years Justin has undergone many different chemotherapy, radiation and antibody treatments.

In addition, he has undergone MIBG therapy, in which a drug containing radioactive iodine is used to kill neuroblastoma without harming healthy cells, and participated in several clinical trials.

He was taken off all treatment in May and is being scanned every eight weeks.

He loves playing baseball, spending time with friends and family, and fishing.

Make-A-Wish Central and Northern Florida grants more than 300 wishes each year to children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. The chapter servers 54 counties throughout Florida. The chapter will grant its 5,000th wish by the end of 2014.

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