Sixteen-year-old Kaylan from Gaithersburg, MD, has always been an avid baseball fan. Not only does she enjoy watching the sport on television and attending Washington Nationals games to cheer on her favorite team, but she also plays softball for her high school as well as on a travel team. Unlike many of her teammates, Kaylan was born with a renal defect that eventually required a kidney transplant. Although Kaylan’s active lifestyle was put on hold due to endless doctor’s appointments and treatment plans, she continued to watch Nationals games as a way to escape her day-to-day life in the hospital and focus on something she loves. When Kaylan found out that Make-A-Wish®
Mid-Atlantic would be granting her one true wish, she immediately knew what to wish for – to meet her hero, Bryce Harper.
Kaylan’s wish journey began at the Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic Evening of Wishes
gala. She and her family attended the gala, where Kaylan was under the impression that she would be sharing her story as a wish kid waiting to receive her wish. When she got up on stage, however, she was surprised with a personalized video from Bryce Harper announcing that her wish would soon be granted! A few short weeks after the gala, Kaylan’s one true wish was realized when she got to spend a day alongside Bryce Harper and the Washington Nationals. Throughout the course of her wish day, Kaylan enjoyed a VIP shopping experience at Under Armour, a behind-the-scenes tour with Harper as her guide, batting practice with the Nationals, throwing the first pitch at the game, and plenty of time hanging out with baseball superstar Bryce Harper.
Have her wish granted to meet her favorite athlete gave Kaylan the courage to continue battling her life-threatening medical condition while pursuing the activities she loves. Since enjoying the magic of her wish day, Kaylan has gone on to win a softball tournament alongside her varsity teammates and played “the best she’s played since her transplant”, demonstrating the powerful impact of her wish experience. Wishes like Kaylan’s provide hope, strength and joy to local children with serious illnesses when they need it most.