For most people, a Hawaiian vacation is a dream come true.
But for one 12-year-old girl, she didn’t just fly almost 5,000 miles to come to paradise. She came to meet her hero: Dog the Bounty Hunter.
“I’m very, very, very excited,” said Maria Canales.
Canales, who goes by her middle name, Jasmine, is a 12-year-old girl from Washington D.C.
But she isn’t your ordinary pre-teen. Canales is battling chronic lung disease and cystic fibrosis, and takes 17 medications a day.
Yet, she remains positive and her story inspires everyone who meets her.
“She’s the strongest person I’ve ever met,” said Heather Williams, Canales’ mother. “I think that’s why she loves Dog so much, because he inspires her, and she inspires everyone she meets. Truly.”
Kids Wish Network, an international charity similar to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, planned a trip to Hawaii for Canales and her family to make the 12-year-old’s ultimate wish come true.
“I’ve always been a big fan since I was young. I watch all of his shows. He’s like my idol,” Canales said.
When the time came to meet her hero at the famous Da Kine Bailbonds, Canales couldn’t stop smiling.
For the few hours she spent with the hit TV show family she’s idolized for years, Canales forgot the pain and stress of her illnesses.
For once, she felt like the luckiest girl in the world.
“My friends are like, ‘You’re so lucky and stuff!'” Canales said.