In 2006, Jonalya could only imagine what it would be like to be a firefighter. “I wanted to fight fires, save lives and make sure people were okay,” she says, reflecting back. “Dealing with my own illness just made me want to show people that there is help.” Her heartfelt wish would be forever etched in Make-A-Wish Southern Florida history as the 6,000th wish granted by the chapter.
Jonalya’s wish experience started off with sirens blaring, as she was escorted from her home to the Hollywood Fire Station. She was greeted by applause from the entire engine company and presented with her personalized firefighter turnouts. Then, Jonalya heard a fire alarm and saved a stuffed Dalmatian from a burning house.
Today, Jonalya is nearing her 15th birthday. Her eighth grade schedule keeps her busy, and writing is her favorite subject. She fondly remembers her wish day; the excitement and nervousness she felt. “Receiving my wish made me very happy. Not many people can have the experience that I did. In fact, I’d love to do it again!” When asked what she thinks when she sees firefighters rushing off to answer a call, she thinks, “Yeah, I did that!”
Wish Granters: German Miret & Jose Morales
Referred by: Cassandra Stepherson, her aunt
Wish adopted by Jewelers For Children