“My wish came true!" exclaimed 13-year-old Noah Moquete, as he got the heated pool of his dreams, thanks to Make-A-Wish Connecticut.
Noah was born with sickle-cell anemia. It's an inherited disease where red blood cells can’t properly carry oxygen through the body because they’re shaped like a crescent or sickle. Living with the disease has not been easy for Noah and his family.
Because of sickle-cell, extreme temperatures and sudden changes in temperature can trigger debilitating pain in Noah’s bones, extremely high fevers, and more trips to the hospital.
Despite his disease, he is an active 13-year-old who loves baseball and swimming. Unfortunately, he can't swim in his friends' pools.
“A lot of my friends have pools and stuff and they always invite me but I can’t really go into them because of my disease.”
It's crucial the pool is heated, due to the disease. The pool isn’t just keeping Noah healthy, it’s helping to heal the entire family, who lost Noah’s older brother Ethan to complications from sickle-cell, 15 years ago.
“Being in the hospital for months at a time, blood transfusions, morphine, his veins collapsing -- we’ve been through hell and back and this pool is gonna help us heal, help Noah stay healthy, and it’s going to help our family stay stronger. Ethan is still with us,” said Noah's parents Normando Moquet and Ziomara Ramos-Moquete.
The heated pool was made possible by Make-A-Wish, and a very generous donation from Johnson Brunetti.
“We’ve made it a priority for five years now, there’s people struggling out there that could use a helping hand and we’re committed doing that in our community." said Joel Johnson. "We feel really honored that we get to be part of this and partner with Make-A-Wish, and bless people here in our community.”
After the experience with Make-A-Wish, both of Noah’s parents are going to volunteer for the organization. His father with his business, and his mother as a wish supporter.
For more info on how you can make a wish come true and become a volunteer, head to their website.