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Make-A-Wish® Celebrates WWE® Superstar John Cena® for Granting Record 500 Wishes
John Cena to become the first celebrity wish granter in the organization’s 35 year history to reach the milestone
PHOENIX (August 21, 2015) – Make-A-Wish® congratulates WWE® Superstar John Cena® for granting 500 wishes through the wish granting organization. Cena will achieve the landmark wish total when he spends time with Rocco, an 8-year-old from Queens, NY, battling leukemia, before WWE Monday Night Raw® at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY. For Rocco, the chance to hang out with the WWE Superstar will be a wish-come-true. For Cena, the meeting will be his 500th opportunity to bring hope and optimism to a wish child battling a life-threatening medical condition.
Since the founding of Make-A-Wish in 1980, no other celebrity has granted as many wishes as Cena. To acknowledge Cena and his contributions to Make-A-Wish, WWE and Make-A-Wish joined together to host a party on Friday, Aug. 21, at a Dave & Buster’s in New York City. Attendees included John Cena, Make-A-Wish America President and CEO David Williams, WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon, WWE Divas The Bella Twins® – Nikki and Brie, WWE Superstar Sheamus®, wish kids and their families. At the event, WWE announced a multi-year, million dollar commitment to Make-A-Wish – a symbol of WWE’s on-going support for wish granting.
In addition to wish granting, Cena regularly goes above and beyond to support the mission of Make-A-Wish. He has personally donated more than 6 million airline miles for wishes involving travel, hosted parties for wish kids at WrestleMania® and served as a Wish Ambassador at speaking engagements. Cena is also a recipient of the Chris Greicius Celebrity Award, which Make-A-Wish awarded him in 2009. In 2012, he also received an award to mark the milestone of his 300th wish, something no other celebrity or athlete has achieved.
“John Cena’s slogan, ‘Never Give UpTM,’ is a constant source of inspiration for wish kids and serves as a reminder to stay strong and keep pushing through the difficult times,” said David Williams, Make-A-Wish America President and CEO. “The fact that he has had the sustained success required to reach 500 wishes speaks volumes about the type of person John is and the quality of the wish experience he delivers.”
“There is no more humbling experience than a child who could ask for anything in the world asking to meet me,” said WWE Superstar John Cena. “I have faced some of the toughest Superstars in WWE history and I’ve never encountered more bravery or toughness than I see in each wish kid that I meet. It is inspiring to see the impact that granting wishes can have and I look forward to granting 500 more.”
WWE has been involved in wish granting since the early 1980s, beginning shortly after the founding of Make-A-Wish. The popularity of WWE has endured throughout the years with a total wish count in the thousands. Since 2001, more than 45 Superstars and Divas have individually been requested, and subsequently, granted a wish. To learn more about Make-A-Wish and the WWE relationship, visit wish.org.
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Make-A-Wish grants the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. According to a 2011 U.S. study of wish impact, most health professionals surveyed believe a wish-come-true has positive impacts on the health of children. Kids say wishes give them renewed strength to fight their illness, and their parents say these experiences help strengthen the entire family. Headquartered in Phoenix, Make-A-Wish is one of the world’s leading children’s charities, serving children in every community in the United States and its territories. With the help of generous donors and more than 27,000 volunteers, Make-A-Wish grants a wish somewhere in the country every 37 minutes. It has granted more than 254,000 wishes since its inception in 1980; more than 14,200 in 2014 alone. Visit Make-A-Wish at www.wish.org to learn more.