Eleven-year-old Sterling wasn't going to let cancer dash his presidential dream.
Neither was Make-A-Wish®
. Decked out in a custom-made Brooks Brothers suit, Sterling became the nation’s youngest commander-in-chief.
“It is only in America that a little boy from Mesquite, Texas, can wish of someday being President of the United States and actually have that wish come true,” Sterling said at his inauguration.
During his day in office, Sterling tended to a number of important matters. He and his first family were transported to the White House via motorcade where his portrait was hung. He had a private meeting with Congressman Pete Sessions and managed to find time for a little bowling. He laid a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and met with officials at the Pentagon.
President Sterling then hopped a Blackhawk helicopter to Fort Meyer, Va., where he was greeted with Hail to the Chief before he reviewed the troops. He received a 21-gun salute and gave the order for a team of Federal Air Marshals to retake a hijacked airplane during a drill. And he gave speeches (written by one of then President George W. Bush’s speechwriters) at the U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Postal Service.
“Sterling actually felt like he was president of the United States,” says Mike, Sterling’s dad. “We are so very grateful to Make-A-Wish for making his dream come true.”
Today, 17-year-old Sterling is healthy and happy playing football for Mesquite High School, but he remembers what it felt like to be the most important leader in the world – even if it was just for a day.
“It was very powerful,” Sterling says.
The power of a wish – a dream come true – can change everything.