Return to mobile version

Darren hurtles headfirst into adventure

Darren's wish to go to Walt Disney World

“ It felt good to see him really smile as much as... ”

For 5-year-old Darren, who has always loved Disney characters and super heroes, nothing was more exciting than a trip to Orlando.

A hero himself, Darren, who battles a hematologic disorder, hurtled headfirst into adventure while visiting not only Walt Disney World®, but Universal Studios and SeaWorld also. He explored every inch of the theme parks. He met his favorite characters including Mickey Mouse, Goofy and Spider-Man and loved the excitement of the fireworks and parades. Darren would get off of a ride, and get right back on line for another turn.

His mother said, “It felt good to see him really smile as much as he did. It was bonding time, and we don’t really have that kind of time usually. To actually be driving for three hours together, staying in the villa, watching movies and going places together. We really felt like one team.” 

 After long action-filled days, Darren and his family returned to the Give Kids the World Village, a special resort created solely for wish families. There, his mother said he loved dancing with the gingerbread man, Murphy. “We recorded a lot, and he loves showing people the videos. It was something really incredible for him.”

Wish granters: Lauren Ruder & Alexandria Costanzo
Referred by Lanidra Payton, his mother
Wish adopted by Batchelor Foundation


The steadfast support Disney provides to Make-A-Wish® dates back to the first official wish kid, Frank “Bopsy” Salazar, whose wish was granted in 1981. In 2015, Disney and Make-A-Wish will grant its 100,000th global wish together. Last year, more than 7,000 wishes involved Disney’s help, and every year, Disney continues to enrich the lives of wish kids around the world by bringing them hope, strength and joy.

The timeless bonds and memories Disney has created have helped kids through treatments, helped them overcome doubts and despair, and helped them feel and get better – because wishes work wonders.
  • Darren's wish to go to Walt Disney World

  • Darren's wish to go to Walt Disney World

  • Darren's wish to go to Walt Disney World

  • Darren's wish to go to Walt Disney World

  • Darren's wish to go to Walt Disney World

  • Darren's wish to go to Walt Disney World

Join the conversation

Leave a Comment


Lauren Ruder

Such a beautiful boy, and family! We were so lucky to meet them and help make boy's wishes come true!

February 11, 2015 - 1:09 PM

Lanidra Payton

We can't Thank You enough for the joy you have brought into our lives, we enjoyed our stay at the village. Our family is forever grateful for everything, including your time , and your to make sure our trip was successful! ! It warms our hearts to know that people still care! !!You ladies alond with the donors and , and the foundation will forever hold a place in our hearts! !!

February 26, 2015 - 8:08 PM

You might also be interested in ...

Ava , 4

chromosomal abnormalities

I wish to go to Walt Disney World®

Ava becomes a princess

Gavin , 5

mitochondrial disease

I wish to go on a Disney Cruise

Gavin sets sail with Mickey Mouse

Oscar , 14

I wish to meet Miranda Cosgrove.

Oscar pals around with "iCarly"
Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida, Inc.
4491 S State Road 7
Suite 201
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33314
(954) 967-9474
Toll Free (888) 773-9474
Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida, Southwest Florida Regional Office
3655 Bonita Beach Road
Suite 3
Bonita Springs, FL 34134
(239) 992-9474

Make-A-Wish® U.S. Virgin Islands
PMB 547
8168 Crown Bay Marina Ste 505
St Thomas, VI 00802-5819
(340) 474-0798

Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida, Tampa Bay Regional Office
324 North Dale Mabry Hwy
Suite 203
Tampa, FL 33609
(813) 288-2600

Make-A-Wish® Southern Florida, Suncoast Regional Office
3430 Magic Oak Lane
Sarasota, FL 34232
(941) 378-9474