Make-A-Wish Iowa Celebrate 30th Anniversary

URBANDALE, Iowa — The morning fog still hangs above the grass.  Most of the state is still in bed.  Not Jaxson Mestdagh.

“I just can’t seem to find that angle,” said Jaxson Mestdagh, 6-year-old golfer from Urbandale.

Jax is working on his short game.  He’s pretty good, too.  Jax and the game of golf found each other.

“The heart condition he has puts him at risk for sudden cardiac arrest at anytime.  So, he’s really restricted on what we can have him do,” said Lezlie Mestdagh, Jaxson’s mother.

Jax’s condition is called cardiomyopathy and golf is pretty much his only safe option for sports.  These early morning sessions are possible because of Make-A-Wish Iowa.  They installed a putting green in his backyard last month.  Since then he’s been out there everyday.   He loves his putting surface, but it wasn’t his original wish.

“He said ‘I know I have the perfect thing.  I’m going to ask for a small heart.’  The first thing he wanted was a cure,” said Lezlie Mestdagh.

Make-A-Wish Iowa celebrates their 30th anniversary this month and the wish for a cure is their most requested wish.  

“We get that question more often then we’d like.  Obviously, that is the one wish we’d like to grant but unfortunately we’re unable to grant for our kids,” said Chris Wood with Make-A-Wish Iowa.

Instead they focus on making their tough journeys a little easier.  The detours included sending more than 1,500 kids to Disney.  Others have gone to Hawaii and even some up with the Blue Angels.

To celebrate their history, they’ve launched 30 Years of Wishes. The goal is to raise enough money in 30 days to bring wishes to 30 more families, just like they did for the Mestdaghs.

“It changes the whole family’s life. It’s not easy being Jaxson’s mom.  It’s not easy being Jaxson’s dad.  It’s not easy being his sister.  The experience you go through to realize some cares about you so much it’s just life changing, really,” said Lezlie.

Wood says they are still nine wishes short of their goal and they need your help.  If you’d like to help visit their website.