When Maksim was only 21-months-old he appeared to be suffering from a bad case of the flu. To check out what they thought was severe dehydration, Maksim’s parents brought him to the ER. They were devastated to discover their son was in kidney failure. He was diagnosed with a medical condition that permanently damaged many of his organs.
“It changed everything,” Maksim’s parents, Jeremiah and Rachael, said. “All Maksim knows and remembers is being sick.”
Over the past four years Maksim has faced numerous surgeries, daily medications, weekly blood draws, three types of dialysis, organ transplants and more. Despite these extreme challenges, he has always kept a positive attitude. “His joy blows us away,” his parents remarked.
When Maksim’s family discovered he qualified to receive a wish from Make-A-Wish, they felt a glimpse of pure happiness. He wished to go to Hawaii, and after months of imagining days spent playing on sunny beaches, his wish day had finally arrived. He couldn’t wait!
As Maksim’s family got ready to board their plane, they received another surprise - his grandpa was going to be their pilot! A veteran pilot with Delta Airlines, Captain Jeremy wanted to ensure Maksim’s wish would be off to an amazing start so he volunteered to pilot the first leg of their flight.
Once they finally arrived in Hawaii, Maksim spent his time exploring the beaches and lagoons, playing in the ocean and relaxing with his family. It was exactly what they needed: time to focus on each other.
“When your family goes through what we have, it adds another whole layer of responsibility and busy-ness,” Maksim’s parents said. “At the end of the day there is just not much time left to spend together because there is always something else demanding your attention. Being granted time away like this brings tears to our eyes.”
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*Story courtesy of Make-A-Wish Minnesota.