Sickle Cell Patient Gets Surprise: Trip To Disney World

Nancy Harty
June 19, 2019 - 4:45 pm

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) – Wednesday is World Sickle Cell Day and a south suburban boy with the disease had his wish for a Disney family vacation granted. 

Make a Wish staffers surprised Jamontae Harris as he arrived for an appointment at La Rabida Hospital in Chicago. A crowd of volunteers and hospital employees wearing Mickey Mouse ears stood outside the elevator to surprise the 8-year-old from Country Club Hills, who was nearly speechless.

He did say he's looking forward to eating a lot of strawberry and vanilla ice cream at the theme park. He's going to Disney World and Universal Studios with his brother and father on Sunday.

Jerome Harris says his son is "super grateful" for the smallest things and is really excited about the trip. Jamontae will travel with his dad and brother this weekend.

The family has been to Disney before -- on a Make A Wish trip for Jamontae's older brother, who also has sickle cell.

The congenital disease affects the red blood cells and causes organ damage.

Dr. Radhika Peddinti, clinical director of the sickle cell program at La Rabida, said Jamontae frequently has a smile on his face despite the intense pain that the disease can bring on suddenly.