Make-A-Wish grants local teen’s wish
Today kicked off 12 days of holiday wishes for one brave South Mississippi teen battling cancer.
Kaleq and his family received the full Mississippi Aquarium experience and even a few big surprises.
They say wishes do come true and for 13-year-old Kaleq Jefferson that’s especially the case. Kaleq’s sister Korde Jefferson said, “It’s good to know that other people support his fight. It’s good to know that we weren’t alone.”
Kaleq was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in July after finding a knot on his neck following a basketball game.
With the help of the Mississippi Aquarium and the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Kaleq had the chance to take the plunge with the immersive SeaTrek experience in front of family and friends. “He was kind of scared about getting in the tank, but then we told him it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity, you should do it, and I just talked to him when he got out, he was like, he loved it.”
Once out of the tank, Kaleq walked outside to a crowd of fans and the first of 12 Christmas wishes in total: a brand new PS5. Make-A-Wish South Mississippi Director Shellie Moses said, “Each day he’ll get a gift or something memorable or something special to make both the holiday season and make his wish a little bit brighter.”
Kaleq’s family says he’s remained strong throughout his cancer battle. Kaleq’s grandmother Pat Howell said, “He took everything in stride, I mean, he didn’t let nothing bother him at all, and that was a good thing because that got us through everything.”
With a good prognosis and 11 more days of gifts on the way, it’s an exciting Christmas season for the basketball super fan. “First of all, we have him, and that’s the most important thing and he’s healthy. Again, I thank God I give him all the praise for that, and yeah, he’s going to have a lot of stuff for Christmas this year too.”