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September 24, 2008 > Bowl-A-Thon to raise money for Make-A-Wish(r)

Bowl-A-Thon to raise money for Make-A-Wish(r)

Submitted By Elaine Kauffman

The Dylan Johnson Memorial Bowl-A-Thon is held in memory of two-year-old Dylan Johnson of Fremont who died of a rare genetic disorder in 2000. Started and coordinated by Dylan's parents, Veronica and Frank, the event has raised more than $70,000 since its inception in 2000. This year's event will be held on Saturday, October 18, at the Cloverleaf Family Bowl in Fremont. Check-in is at 12 p.m., with bowling starting at 1 p.m. The cost is $20 per person, which includes three games and shoe rental. There will be a raffle with over 120 raffle prizes, a silent auction and a live auction.

Dylan was born with Ivemark Syndrome, a rare disorder that caused him to undergo a series of surgeries. When Dylan was two, his mother contacted Make-A-Wish and heard that her son qualified to receive a wish. Dylan loved Mickey Mouse and wanted to meet him. The Foundation sent Dylan and his parents to Disneyland for a week. He had a private meeting with many of the Disney characters, which brought a big smile to his face. Unfortunately, ten days after Dylan's dream meeting with Mickey he passed away. To help ease her grieving, Veronica Johnson started to raise funds for Make-A-Wish. Ever since her first Bowl-A-Thon in 2000, Veronica has donated all proceeds to Make-A-Wish, to help fund the wishes of other children with life-threatening illnesses.

"This is good therapy for me," said Ms. Johnson. "I do it for other families, in the belief that my son wants me to help grant wishes. I also try to dispel the misconception that Make-A-Wish serves only terminally ill children. When I talk to people I want them to understand that the Foundation grants wishes to children who have life-threatening, but not necessarily terminal, illnesses."

"We are honored that Veronica has chosen to remember Dylan in this way," said Patricia Wilson, Executive Director of the Greater Bay Area Make-A-Wish Foundation(r). "We appreciate her dedication to Make-A-Wish and all the hard work she puts into making this event such a success. It is very moving and a wonderful way to remember Dylan."

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