As Cinderella once said, “A dream is a wish your heart makes.” For one first grader at Popp’s Ferry his dream will finally become a reality thanks to his classmates and Make-A-Wish.
Seven-year-old Bentley Fontan hasn’t always had it easy. In his short life, he has already had two open heart surgeries and he has a pacemaker. But on Monday, students at Popp’s Ferry Elementary School and Make-A-Wish came together to turn Bentley’s dreams of going to Disney World a reality. “They helped raise money for us to go to Disney World and we can get on all of the rides and stuff.”
The students at Popp’s Ferry raised more than $7,000 for Bentley by collecting sponsors from businesses, family members, and friends for their upcoming color run in May. Teacher Chelsea Fortenberry said, “We are still in awe, I mean, we still have money rolling in every day and the fact that our kids were able to raise $7,500 to donate to Make-A-Wish for Bentley it just says a lot about the kids and you know that they have got such big hearts and they can do so much for someone else and just be so selfless. It’s really heartwarming to see the kids do that.”
The kids at Popp’s Ferry adore Bentley as evidenced by Payton Campbell, a third grade student who raised a few hundred dollars for Bentley all by herself. “Me and my mom wanted to make Bentley’s wish come true for going to Disney World.”
The students at Popp’s Ferry raised so much money that they might be able to fund another child’s wish as well. Principal Todd Boucher said, “We had no expectation that we would be able to fully fund this trip, but our student council took the ball, they ran with it and they raised an excess of what was needed. They probably paid for Bentley’s full trip and another child’s wish.”
As for Bentley, he’s most looking forward to meeting one of his idols and going on some iconic rides. “I’m looking forward to seeing Mickey and going on Splash Mountain.”