Little boy gets magical send-off from Make-A-Wish


Six-year-old Giovanni Maggiore was born with just half a heart. He also has a condition that attacks his organs. He's had multiple surgeries and it's been hard for his whole family.

"He's having trouble getting listed for a transplant because of how much his disease has progressed recently. So we're at a stage where it's very difficult for us," said his mother, Maya.

But on Thursday, an entire week of fun, happiness, and being a normal family was awaiting them; the family was going to Disney World thanks to Make-A-Wish Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

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"A wish, we hope, can maybe bring back a tiny bit of that childhood that may have been taken away, and give a nice respite for the entire family to be together and heal together," said Jordan Salvatoriello with Make-A-Wish.

"I'm kind of excited to go on a plane," Giovanni said.

American Airline employees dressed as Disney characters greeted Giovanni and his family at the airport drop-off. They escorted Giovanni through security and to his gate.

All the while, there were reminders that Gio is still tender.

"Careful of my tummy, I just took my meds," he told the Disney characters.

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For most of his ordeal, Gio has been bed-bound, and unable to do the kinds of things that other kids do.

When he arrived at the gate, it was fully decorated with Incredibles colors, and his name was on a huge banner. There was cake, snacks, balloons and tons of Disney decorations.

Gio stood in awe looking at everything, as a crowd cheered him on.

"We can't thank Make-A-Wish Massachusetts and Rhode Island enough, and the something magic flight, just putting all the pieces together to make it all work. It's an overwhelming feeling," Maya told FOX25.

When Gio was on the plane, Disney characters stood outside the plane, waving goodbye. Gio's face was pressed on the window, waving goodbye, ready for his week of magic.


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