Otsego Students Raise Money For Make-A-Wish Girl’s Disney Trip

Posted at 4:44 PM, Jan 30, 2013

OTSEGO, Mich. — Ordinary students at Otsego High School are doing extraordinary things for a young girl in their community through the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

4-year-old Brooke lives in nearby Hamilton and suffers from severe combined immune deficiency. That means she has an almost non-existent immune system. Only one of every 100,000 babies are born with it.

If untreated, the children can die within a year.

Brooke’s wish: go to Disney World, and that’s just what she and her family did earlier in January. While she was there, Brooke got to meet all the usual suspects: Goofy, Pluto, and – her favorite – Mickey Mouse.

Now the students at Otsego High are raising the money to pay for Brooke’s trip.

“Having fundraising nights, selling t-shirts, selling stars and stuff through the school,” student council president Maggie Darnell said.

As much fun as Brooke and her family had on the trip, the students are getting just as much out of paying for it.

“Hearing their stories – it’s very inspirational to know that they’re fighting so hard,” student council vice president McKenzie Bartz said. “I just want to make a difference in their lives and I’ll do as much as I can.”

The school’s teachers are definitely impressed with the selflessness of their students.

“They’ll take this experience and hopefully continue to want to lead and serve as they move out of the high school and into the real world,” Merry Beth Ruiz said. Ruiz is a Spanish teacher and is in her first year as student council advisor.

The Otsego community will get to meet Brooke – for the first time ever – at the school’s basketball game next Friday night.

Darnell can’t wait.

“I just want to give her a big hug or something!”

More information on Brooke and other fundraising dates for her can be found here.