Wishes Past and Future
Amtrak supports Make-A-Wish, the non-profit organization that creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. Wish requests vary across the Amtrak system and have included traveling on Amtrak to visit our western National Parks, ride along the Northeast corridor, vacation at the beach and visit family and friends. Make-A-Wish is able to fund these types of wishes thanks to generous contributions from partners and individuals who are critical in helping the organization get closer to its goal vision to grant the wish of every eligible child. With the help of our employees, Amtrak is able to enhance the journey and create fond memories for the wish child and their family. While our most popular wish request is to be an Amtrak Conductor or Engineer, all Amtrak employees go above and beyond to make the trip a magical one. In stations, onboard and behind the scenes, Amtrak employees become engaged from all facets of the system such as behind the scenes tours, pre-boarding and baggage assistance to the onboard experience of scanning tickets, making announcements and high-balling the train along the way.
In the beginning of 2020, Amtrak was contacted to grant a wish for 8-year-old Hunter Bristow. With little care to where he went, all Hunter wanted was to “blow the whistle” like an engineer or help scan in tickets like a conductor. A lifetime love of trains led him to choose Amtrak to grant his wish. After everything was set up and all the pieces had come together, COVID-19 hit and Hunter’s wish had to be put on hold. We are still hoping to grant Hunter his wish and are still in contact with his Wish Manager today.
We truly value our ability to partner with Make-A-Wish and help make wishes come true. Visit Make-A-Wish for more information on all of the amazing work they do.
VIP Adriel Davila
Make-A-Wish VIP and honorary Amtrak Conductor Adriel Davila, along with other family members, was given a loving welcome by Officer George Awad along with his canine partner T-Rex and Officer Michael Chiappone, Sr. and the Amtrak Customer Service team at New York - Penn Station before departing with his family on Train 97 to Kissimmee, FL.
VIP Wesley Hanson
On January 15, 2019, members of the APD Western Division assisted Make-A-Wish in granting the wish of six-year-old VIP Wesley Hanson. Wesley’s wish was to be a train conductor. Making this wish come true was facilitated by Lead Communications Specialist Barbara Petito and Oakland Superintendent Operations Sean Paul. Wesley and his family rode Train #6 from Emeryville to Sacramento and Wesley was made an honorary conductor on board the train for the day.
Wesley and his sister.
Copyright Leigh Ann Pincus
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