Make-A-Wish sends Las Vegas girl to Hawaii
Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- 15-year old Lorena Rangel knew she was in for a surprise when she arrived at the Macy's at Fashion Show Mall and was greeted by law enforcement officers. Inside, a group of Hawaiian dancers and drummers were waiting.
"I wanted to cry, to see so many people contributing. It was amazing to think people would do this."
The Make-A-Wish Foundation granted Lorena a trip to Hawaii for her and her family. Macy's and Fashion Show Mall threw in luggage and a shopping spree, so they could travel in style.
"It's so wonderful for us to bring hope, strength and joy to these families who have been suffering and going through so much with doctor's visits and hospitals and needles," says Make-A-Wish of Southern Nevada Executive Director Caleen Norrod Johnson. "For a short period of time, they can forget about all that."
Lorena has end stage renal failure. She looks healthy on the outside, but she's been through a lot over the last year.
"I actually have to go Monday, Wednesday and Fridays to go get my blood cleaned, which is dialysis. It's pretty hard, because I get sick and tired, and it's not easy for us to be going through that."
Going on a trip wouldn't have been possible for the family on their own. But Macy's is not only making it possible, they're granting wishes for 60 children around the country through their Believe program.
"Our goal is to raise $1 million or more for Make-A-Wish," says Kelly Fernandez, store manager of Macy's at Fashion Show. "It's through our customers and community writing letters to Santa."
Lorena certainly believes wishes come true now.
"I'm pretty excited to be able to go with my family, because that will be big for us because it'll be our first major trip since I've been sick. So I'm excited."
For every letter to Santa dropped off at their stores, Macy's is donating $1 to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
On Dec. 14, National Believe Day, Macy's will donate $2 for every letter.