Ohio boy, 9, takes over as CEO of Make-a-Wish Foundation for a day

CINCINNATI, OH (WLWT) A 9-year-old boy took over as CEO of the Make-a-Wish Foundation.

Adrian McKinney is winning a battle with sickle cell disease. On Monday, his wish was granted by the Make-a-Wish Foundation of Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana: He became CEO of the nonprofit for a day.

Adrian may be small, but he’s making a massive impact. The Cincinnati-area native took over as head of Make-a-Wish OKI Monday in an effort to help others.

The 9-year-old is no stranger to the Make-a-Wish program.

Last summer, the organization granted a wish for Adrian, sending him and his family on an all-expenses paid trip to Hawaii.

During that process in 2016, Adrian got to meet CEO of Make-a-Wish OKI, Doug Kelly. Adrian told Kelly that one day, he wants to be CEO of the nonprofit. Kelly made that wish come true Monday.

Adrian said he wanted the job so he could let others experience the same kind of joy he did.

“I’m so grateful because I am a Wish Kid and I am grateful for my wish and I want other kids to have wishes like mine,” Adrian said.

Kelly, the man behind at the helm of the nonprofit the other 364 days of the year, said he knows how important a wish can be for families like the McKinneys.

“For many of the kids it’s a chance to think about the future, because it’s the first time they’ve been able to do that,” Kelly said.

The future is looking bright for Adrian thanks to Make-a-Wish and the support of his family.

His mother has been with him every step of the way, and his little sister was Adrian’s bone marrow donor. Now, the family is focusing on helping others.

“I hope it sparks the love of people, the love of generosity, the love of giving back,” said Torie McKinney, Adrian’s mother.

“That’s usually the magic of Make-a-Wish,” added Kelly. “It delivers hope when they need it most.”

Kelly said that three out of four families say that the granted wish is a turning point against the illness.

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