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Make-A-Wish Gala Illuminates the Journey

On April 6, 2019, nearly 500 Make-A-Wish® Massachusetts and Rhode Island supporters gathered for the 2019 Make-A-Wish Gala at the InterContinental Boston.
  • 2019 Wish Hero Award recipient Rob Gronkowksi, New England Patriots legend, with Make-A-Wish Massachusetts and Rhode Island CEO Charlotte Beattie (far right), board chair Jay Mattie (second from left), emcee Liz Brunner (far left), and wish recipients.

  • 2019 Wish Hero Award recipient Rob Gronkowksi speaks to the audience about his role as a wish granter. To-date, Rob has granted the wishes of 14 children from across the country.

  • Alicia Casey, MD, pediatric pulmonologist at Boston Children’s Hospital and a member of our Medical Advisory Council, speaks about the integral role Make-A-Wish plays in her treatment plans for patients.

  • Alicia Casey, MD, pediatric pulmonologist from Boston Children’s Hospital and a member of our Medical Advisory Council, and 2016 wish recipient Aaron, whom she referred for a wish.

  • Make-A-Wish Massachusetts and Rhode Island CEO Charlotte Beattie highlights the many ways in which Make-A-Wish supporters “illuminate the journey” for wish children.

  • Wish recipient Ruby (right) and her family.

  • Wish recipient Ruby hugs her dad, Jake Weinberg, after he shared the story of her wish to cook with the chefs at Chez Panisse.

  • Wish recipient Ellie performs on the pedal harp she received for her wish.

  • Wish mom Christina O'Connor and wish recipient John (center) with their family. Christina spoke about the ways John's wish to go to Hawaii to see volcanoes brought their family back together after his lengthy cancer treatment.

  • Emcee Liz Brunner declares the lucky winner of the Diamond Raffle.

  • Rob Gronkowski helps auctioneer John Terrio kick off the live auction.

With the theme of Illuminate the Journey, the event highlighted stories of wish children and the generous community of supporters who help make wishes come true. Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots legend, was presented with the 2019 Wish Hero Award for his outstanding work as a wish granter, having fulfilled the wishes of 14 children from across the country since 2012. Rob was joined onstage by three wish recipients who met him through their wishes: Ryan (2018), Cole(2012), and Jordyn (2017). 

Through speeches by their parents, the evening also featured the stories of Ruby, 12, who wished to cook a meal with the chefs at Chez Panisse in California and serve it to her family, and John, seven, whose wish took him to Hawaii to see volcanoes. Sixteen-year-old Ellie, who wished for a pedal harp, performed for the audience as her way of expressing gratitude for her wish. 

Alicia Casey, MD, a pediatric pulmonologist at Boston Children’s Hospital and a member of the Make-A-Wish Massachusetts and Rhode Island Medical Advisory Council, spoke about the integral role Make-A-Wish plays in her treatment plans for patients. Charlotte Beattie, Make-A-Wish Massachusetts and Rhode Island CEO, emphasized the vital role that our community of supporters plays in moving us closer to our vision of reaching every eligible child.

The memorable evening, emceed by Liz Brunner, raised over $900,000 to grant wishes for nearly 100 children with life-threatening medical conditions in the coming months. We thank all of our sponsors – in particular, our Presenting Sponsor, Steve and Deborah Barnes together with Bain Capital Community Partnership – as well as our event participants, guests, volunteers, and in-kind donors for joining with us to “illuminate the journey” for our wish children! 

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Photos above by Ellen Rogers Photography unless otherwise noted

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Photo Collection 2: Guest Arrivals
Photo Collection 3: Additional Event Photos


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SAVE THE DATES
For Make-A-Wish® Massachusetts and Rhode Island Events


Evening of Wishes

November 16, 2019 | Providence, RI

The 2020 Make-A-Wish Gala
April 4, 2020 | Boston, MA

Make-A-Wish® Massachusetts and Rhode Island
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Boston, MA 02110
(617) 367-9474
Back Line (617) 367-0739
Make-A-Wish® Massachusetts and Rhode Island, West Springfield Office
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West Springfield, MA 01089
(413) 733-9474

Make-A-Wish® Massachusetts and Rhode Island, Providence Office
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East Providence, RI 02915
(401) 781-9474