5-year-old with leukemia gets her “wish day”

Local News

JEFFERSON – Make A Wish Iowa made 5-year-old Avril Shahan’s dreams come true with a brand-new play set she had been wanting for a while.

”Today this means so much joy. Avril was diagnosed in August 2017 and just making it this far and her having the opportunity to have a wish granted just means a lot to us,” says Avril’s mother Tabatha. 

Local 5 has been following this since last summer. This fearless 5-year-old was diagnosed with leukemia when she was just 3-years-old. After countless rounds of chemo, she’s finally reaching the end.

“I don’t have to go in more often than I did,” said Shahan.

It’s been a roller-coaster of emotions, but in this moment, happiness has taken over. 

“Avril like all kids who have a critical illness, they spend time from the doctors. They spend time away from their families. They spend time being poked and prodded and things that most kids don’t have to go through, so for her to be able to have the opportunity to have that one true wish that she really wants gives hope to her and her family that things will be normal for them,” says Make A Wish Iowa’s Director of Development Carol TeBockhorst. 

Avril chose something she gets to enjoy with her sisters. “It’s cooler and it’s better because it has a lemonade stand.”  

In between her upcoming treatments, she’ll be selling food and lemonade. But she hasn’t forgotten what she’s learned over the past 2 years, “That I’m brave.”  

She hopes other kids in her shoes can withstand anything. “I want them to know that they can be braver.” 

Avril will have her last round of chemo in November, but she’ll get to ring the cancer free bell at Blank Children’s Hospital in October. Make A Wish Iowa was able to grant Avril’s wish through their partnership with Trusted Choice. They’ve been able to grant 7 wishes so far!

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