4-year-old boy battling cancer becomes fire chief for a day thanks to Make-A-Wish

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Posted at 9:53 AM, May 10, 2021

MCALLEN, Texas — A Texas boy battling cancer became a fire chief for a day thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

At 4 years old, Justin Perez is stronger than most kids his age. He’s battled a brain tumor for more than half of his life, KRGV reports.

When Make-A-Wish heard about Justin’s story and selected him, the boy’s family says he only had one request.

"‘I want to be a fireman.’ That was literally the first thing he said in the interview," Laura Moreno, Justin’s mother, told KRGV.

The nonprofit got to work and started making calls to make the boy’s wish come true. And within hours, the McAllen Fire Department had a plan and took Justin’s dream a step further.

"His request to be a firefighter today. We didn't make him a firefighter today. We made him chief for the day," Jim Schultz, McAllen Fire Department Chief, told KRGV.

The day even included a helicopter ride with state troopers

"I have no words to explain it. It’s like, it's amazing. You know we were expecting something big, but this is honestly beyond words," said Moreno.

It was all to make Justin’s wish come true.

"Of any wish that he could've had in this entire world, that was his wish and we made it come true," Homero Garza, Hildalgo County Fire Marshal, told KRGV.