Hoosiers wake-up to ‘walk for wishes’ to help kids with life-threatening illnesses

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INDIANAPOLIS – About 1,000 Hoosier woke up Saturday morning to grant a wish.

“I’m really excited,” Neve Bowden said.

They’re granting wishes for kids like Bowden.

She was diagnosed nine months ago with retinoblastoma.

“I want to go to Disney World,” she said.

The Make-A-Wish Foundation hosted its 11th annual Indianapolis Walk for Wishes Saturday.

The organization orchestrates life-changing experiences for kids living with life-threatening diseases.

“Since being treated in Cincinnati, we’ve had to be separated from our boys,” Maggie Bowden said, Neve’s mother. “So we’re looking forward to a great family vacation to be together.”

In Indiana, Make-A-Wish said about 300 kids are waiting for their wishes to come true. The average cost to fulfill a wish, the organization said, is about $8,000.

Without time on their side, events like today become ever-so-critical to a mission targeting the youngest of fighters.

“In their darkest time when all they hear is no, we tell them yes,” Nicole Toombs said, marking and communications director for Make-A-Wish. “We tell them one thing they want to do most, and that’s what they can focus on, and doctors even tell us it’s a form of medicine they can’t give them.”

Organizers hoped to raise $136,000 Saturday.

CBS4 was a proud sponsor.

“We’re just really grateful and thank everyone for being out here,” Bowden said. “And really thankful for Make-A-Wish. It’s a great organization.”

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