Paxton’s Story: “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”


Make-A-Wish Alabama overcoming challenges to grant wishes to critically-ill children

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Paxton Medley was a pretty happy guy, when his family pulled into the parking lot. He thought they were going to the store.

That may not sound terribly exciting but with the pandemic, it had been a quite a while since Paxton had been in a store. When you’re 6-years-old, even grocery shopping can start to sound more like an adventure that a chore.

The adventure was just beginning, however. This was no grocery store. It was Bankston Motor Homes, Inc of Huntsville, and Paxton was about to get the surprise of his young life.

He came through the double-doors with his mom, dad, brother and two sisters. Then, he stopped and turned, as someone asked, “is there a special little boy named Paxton here?” He slowly nodded his head, eyes wide above his mask.

Even with the mask on, you could see the smile start to form. He looked up at his mom, as he realized what was happening. Make-A-Wish Alabama was about to grant his wish.

Paxton suffers from a blood disorder called Beta Thalessemia. The condition requires monthly blood transfusions and special medication. His request to Make-A-Wish Alabama was for a camper in which he could travel the country with his family.

His mom, Kim, said, “we started camping a few years ago…and we really all just kind of fell in love with it. It’s just such a good way to have family time and the kids can play and explore and get dirty and just be kids.”

“Make A Wish is just so amazing, ” said Paxton’s dad, Adam. He added, “I’m just so grateful to those who give to Make-A-wish but also for the peace and joy our son can receive by having one of his dreams.”

Joy was exactly what those at the wish reveal saw, as Paxton twirled around inside the camper declaring, “I love it!”

Right now, granting such wishes is a little more difficult. Trips, known as “to go” wishes by the non-profit, are on hold because of the pandemic. “To have” wishes, like Paxton’s, present their own challenges.

Lacy Fitpatrick is the North Alabama Development Manager for Make-A-Wish. She says, “a lot of times our ‘to have’ wishes are more expensive. Sometimes (they are) double or triple the cost. So, that puts a limit on us, as well.”

Meanwhile, the wait list grows. Every day, more children with life-threatening illnesses are referred to Make-A-Wish Alabama by their doctors or relatives. Currently, there are some 275 children around the state who are waiting to experience a day like Paxton’s, which he described as “the best day of my life.”

To help make more wishes come true, WHNT News 19 is once again partnering with Make-A-Wish Alabama. We invite you to join us for a virtual telethon on Monday, August 24. Until then, look for more stories here of some awesome “Wish Kids” in our community.

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