View Full Version : Updated - Father bans his 4-year-old daughter from Make-A-Wish trip to Disney World

19-07-2012, 07:27 PM
A four-year-old cancer survivor's dream Make-A-Wish Foundation trip to Disney World has been cancelled by her own father - because he thinks only dying children deserve the charity's money.

McKenna May, from Haskins, Ohio, was granted $3,500 (£2,235) to fund a once-in-a-lifetime holiday to the Florida theme park, after spending half her short life undergoing agonising treatment for lieukaemia.

But the brave little girl has been left devastated after her father William May refused to sign a consent form allowing her to go.

Since she was diagnosed with cancer in April 2010, McKenna has undergone 15 spinal taps, multiple chemotherapy treatments, and a series of steroid injects. She has been hospitalised numerous times.

She underwent her final treatment last month after showing signs of beating the disease, but won't won't be officially cancer-free for another five years.

To cheer her up during the painful treatments, McKenna's mother Whitney Hughes and grandmother Lori Helppie applied to the Make-A-Wish foundation.

Moved by her plight, the charity granted McKenna her wish and agreed to pay for the family to travel to Disney World in Florida.

But before the trip could be booked, both parents had to sign a consent form. And William May refused.

Speaking to the Bowling Green Sentinel-Tribune newspaper, he argued the gift was an improper use of donations, and that handouts should be reserved for 'kids who only have six months to live'.

Mr May admitted he is angry with his ex-wife and her mother, who he claims are preventing him from seeing his daughter. He told the Sentinel-Tribune: 'I wasn't allowed to be involved. It ticked me off.'

Ms Hughes and Ms Hellpie have refused to give up hope they can still take McKenna to Disney World and are attempting the raise the money themselves, passing around collection jars in their local community.

Ms Helppie said: 'The important thing is to get her there. She loves Mickey Mouse. She loves Cinderella.'

Ms Hughes added: 'She's really excited. It's all she's talked about for the last three months.'

Charity chiefs are, meanwhile, bewildered by the row - having ruled McKenna was clearly deserving of the trip.

Susan McConnell, president and CEO of Make-A-Wish for Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana, told the Sentinel-Tribune: 'The doctors are the ones who determine if she is qualified. She's been through a lot. What I really feel bad about is she is stuck in the middle.'

19-07-2012, 07:31 PM
Re: Father bans his 4-year-old daughter from Make-A-Wish trip to Disney World

I couldn't believe what I was reading. Surely if Make a Wish Foundation said she was worthy then that's all that matters. As far as I understand it they don't grant these wishes willy nilly.

He needs to grow up and be thankful that his little girl is alive - how can he deny her this trip of a lifetime :nono: it makes my blood boil :furious:

:sorry: rant over :anxious:

19-07-2012, 07:35 PM
Re: Father bans his 4-year-old daughter from Make-A-Wish trip to Disney World

and i wonder why they don't want him to see her!
i really can't put what i'd like to on here!

19-07-2012, 08:04 PM
That poor little girl :-(

19-07-2012, 11:24 PM
This guy is a total idiot. I hope they can raise the money. If Make-a-Wish decided she was eligible then who is he to say no?

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20-07-2012, 05:02 AM
Re: Father bans his 4-year-old daughter from Make-A-Wish trip to Disney World

This poor little girl has been to hell and back and this man honestly thinks she isn't worth of a trip to WDW ?!?! I don't understand how some of these people lived long enough to create a baby..honestly.

I'm glad to know she is strong..looks like she is going to need to be to overcome her DNA :thumbsdown:

20-07-2012, 05:39 AM
Re: Father bans his 4-year-old daughter from Make-A-Wish trip to Disney World

WOW! Just Wow! What a complete @sshole. Sorry bout that but I can't put it any other way... Way to go DAD!.......................NOT!

That is absolutely disgusting to hurt your own child to get back at her Mother and Grandmother..... there is a special place in hell for you... do hurry and take it now.

20-07-2012, 09:17 PM
Re: Father bans his 4-year-old daughter from Make-A-Wish trip to Disney World

I've just read this in the Daily News :D

They’re going to Disney World!

Friends, family, and complete strangers have raised more than enough money to send a four-year-old girl whose leukemia is in remission to the Magic Kingdom after her father denied the child a Make-A-Wish-funded trip to the Orlando theme park because she wasn’t “sick enough.”

The story of McKenna May, who was diagnosed with leukemia as a two-year-old but prevented from visiting Disney World by a seemingly bitter father ricocheted across the nation this week, receiving coverage in national media outlets ranging from Gawker to Business Insider.

When the story first ran in the Bowling Green Sentinel-Tribune, it was reported that the child’s mother and grandmother had decided to try to raise money for an alternate trip; the four-year-old had been talking about visiting the theme park for months.

The women placed collection jars around their small Ohio town in an attempt to raise the $3,500 they thought they would need if they drove from Ohio to Florida.

But then they moved online, and that was when the donations came pouring in. The family created a page called “Disney Wish” on gofundme.com and in the short span of a few days, 238 donations totaling $12,696 made their way to the site as of Friday afternoon EST.

“Looking at the figure above, simply takes my breath away,” Lori Helppie, the child’s grandmother, wrote on the site. “Our family thanks you from the bottom of our hearts.”

Most donations came in $5, $10, or $20 denominations, but a few gave even more.

One anonymous donor contributed $500 and left no note, while another listed as “Someone special” gave $1,000 without so much as a word.

Those who did leave notes seemed to connect with May’s story, even if they didn’t know her.

“As an adult going through chemotherapy myself I was very touched by McKenna's story and had to donate something even though you have exceeded your goal,” Jeff Rubin wrote with his gift. “Take some of the extra money to make her trip as special as possible. Have a wonderful time.”

Rubin’s lack of concern that the family had exceeded its goal was echoed throughout the page.

“If there are funds left over, I hope they can help defray the costs of having a very ill child. We've experienced childhood illness in our family, and my heart goes out to you,” the donors listed as Michelle and Stephen Farris commented.

But the generosity didn’t end there. Numerous Disney employees and insiders reached out to the Daily News in an attempt to offer the leukemia survivor in-kind donations for the trip.

James Grosso, general manager of the Hilton Orlando hotel inside the Disney World Resort, contacted the Daily News after reading Thursday’s story to offer the family five free nights’ stay.

“I could not imagine what this little girl has been through at such a young age,” Grosso said. “If this very small token of a weeklong stay at our hotel can bring smiles to that girl's face after all she has been through, that was my goal and motivation, that she gets to see what was promised to her, Disney World and all it has to offer.”

20-07-2012, 09:27 PM
Now all I'm all teary eyed.

20-07-2012, 09:40 PM
I was the same :yes:

21-07-2012, 12:30 PM
Does kind of bring tears to the eyes doesn't it?

21-07-2012, 07:04 PM
Yaaaaaaaaaay! Whoooooop! Whoooooooop!

21-07-2012, 08:29 PM

23-07-2012, 07:57 PM
Yes!!!!That is wonderful!!!!! restores my faith in human kind....there is hope for us yet

23-07-2012, 11:35 PM
So very happy for this little sweetheart!!! I hope she sends her Father a postcard :taunt:

24-07-2012, 03:52 PM
Makes me feel all emotional. How kind people can be.

It will be brilliant for her to go, but it will be equally great that her father is made to look like a complete idiot.