NewsUplifting Arizona


Make-A-Wish builds at-home playground for Tucson 4-year-old with rare condition

Melina Make A Wish.jpg
Posted at 10:32 AM, Jun 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-28 13:56:52-04

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — Make-A-Wish Arizona provided an exciting moment for 4-year-old Melina, who got a big surprise on Sunday.

The group granted her wish for an at-home playground.

“It was incredible. I never thought they would go this big,” said her father, Christian.

Melina has Hurler Syndrome and has put up quite the fight in her four years, already undergoing two bone marrow transplants.

“It’s a rare form of disease that doesn’t let her produce certain lysosomes in her system, which doesn’t allow her body to naturally recycle some of the bad cells in her body, which causes a bunch of different problems,” explained her dad.

The disease, also known as MPS1, makes Melina immune-compromised and non-verbal. That’s why her parents say the playground was the perfect wish to grant and gives her a safe way to have fun.

“I know she's going to be very happy when she gets comfortable with this place. It's going to help her a lot mobility-wise, having her use her strength, her own strength,” said her father.

Melina has Hurler Syndrome and has put up quite the fight in her four years!

While Melina enjoyed the big surprise, her parents were all smiles while they enjoyed the time they have with her.

“We don’t know the lifespan we have with this. Hurler Syndrome has a lifespan of 10 years with a zero-survival rate. So, we try to live life with a different perspective,” said her mother.