Mesa woman helps grant a Phoenix child's wish for books found written on a balloon

MESA, AZ - It's not unusual to find Barb Mattingly watering plants outside her home.

But one day was a little different when her sister Kathy called. She picked up the phone, and that's when she noticed something in her yard.

"I looked down and there was this balloon floating right at my feet," Mattingly said. On that pink balloon, in black marker, was a wish written by 12-year-old Vanessa, an avid reader in west Phoenix.

"To me it's not really reading," Vanessa said. "It's using my imagination to go someplace else, like going to a different planet.”

So just like when she reads, Vanessa used her imagination to get a series of books she wanted but couldn't get from the library. She wrote her wish and her address on a balloon, let it go and hoped for the best. A few days later, it landed 20 miles away.

"Who would not get these books for her?" asked Kathy. The sisters knew they had to buy the books. They believe this happened for a reason and hopefully this story will always stay with Vanessa.

"Someday when the world or someone is not going to be kind to you, which is going to happen, because we all have it, just think of that balloon," says Barb.

The sisters hope to meet Vanessa one day. They actually want to give the balloon back to her so one day she can give it to her kids and tell them that dreams really do come true.

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