A boy who was born with a congenital heart defect got his wish to visit Saturn in a red rocket ship thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
““It was a tearjerker just to see our son being able to experience something like this, for him, just for him,” dad Zach Wright told ABC News. “He can’t do everything the average kid does.”
Zayden Wright, 7, of Augusta, Georgia underwent his first open-heart surgery when he was 2 weeks old. He has had several more since.
When the Make-A-Wish Foundation learned his wish, they were at first stumped as to how to bring it to life.
“Traditionally we’d look at this wish and send them to space camp but what’s really important about Zayden is he has sensory issues so that wouldn’t have worked,” said Amy Alvarez, Make-A-Wish Georiga’s vice president of marketing and communications.
They decided to approach an Atlanta-based animation studio to bring Zayden’s vision to life through virtual reality. The even got astronaut Leroy Chiao to accompany him on the adventure.
They used a voice recording of Zayden describing what he imagined Saturn to look like to guide them with their recreation.
He loved every minute of his virtual experience.
“This special little boy has given us all so much hope and the true belief that if you can imagine anything, it can be possible if you just believe,” said Alvarez.