Molly from OH, Fighting Anaplastic Ependymoma

Trip to Kure Beach, NC for 19th birthday with friends and family

Molly received her diagnosis THE DAY she was supposed to be moving into the dorms her freshman year The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Her wish to have family and friends visit her on the beach in NC.
From Molly, "I just want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for one of the best weeks of my life!!! I haven't smiled like that in a LONG time!!!"

Molly's thank you video:

Kennedy, from IL, Fighting Ewing Sarcoma

COVID-19 Virtual wish to meet Omarion

What we thought was a toothache turned out to be a tumor in my left jaw. After staying in and out of the hospital for a little over a year, 14 rounds of chemo and two surgeries, I was pronounced cancer-free. I was rediagnosed with a tumor in the middle of my spine and left arm. I am now undergoing 25 rounds of radiation in my arm and 25 rounds in my spine. Once my radiation is completed, I will be starting chemo once again to assist the radiation to kill the cancer. My mom is my caregiver and she's always making sure I'm being taken care of. I would love to do something for her and my sister as well as myself so we can have live one day without the worries of my cancer returning.

Hunter from AK, fighting Ewings Sarcoma

Gaming Computer

I just graduated high school and was about to start college. I found a lump on my ankle that kept growing. I have to have inpatient chemo every two weeks for 9 months and have to have an amputation. I would like a gaming computer to provide a distraction from chemo/cancer and my worries.

I'm so grateful for you guys. Like seriously thank you this means the world to me!

Diana from PA, Fighting ALL

Disney Wish

Diana’s thank you video:

I was diagnosed with Leukemia (ALL). My family, fiancé, my two and half-year-old son at the time and I were absolutely shocked and devastated. My son is now turning four years old which means for almost 2 years of his young life I have not been fully capable of enjoying events and activities a healthy mother does with her son. As a mother, not being able to take my son to public areas such as the aquarium, zoo, sporting events or even the mall is a terrible feeling. Cancer has taken time and memories away from family and loved ones that I will never get back. After all my family has been through, I believe a respite will give my fiancé, son and myself a sense of joy and a feeling that for once in two years, we are a happy normal family. Cancer has not only affected me, but it has affected my fiancé and son as well. Seeing them happy is all I could ask for and I hope this short story will get us a well-earned wish that I've been dreaming about. Thank you

Tatyana from AL, Fighting CIC-DUX4 sarcoma


Tatyana was enrolled as a fulltime college student at UAB majoring in Education. She has a lot of close friends that she talks about often. She is also in a 9 month relationship with a young man that she refers to as "the love of her life" Providing support to this family is very critical at this time. Tatyana is really focused on making as many memories as possible to leave with her family.

Izaac from MI, Fighting Germ Cell Tumor, Brain Cancer


Before my tumor, I seemed to be a fairly typical kid of my age. I played all kinds of sports, hung out with friends all the time, and just seemed normal. I had beat the germ cell tumor but by early the next year we found out it had come back. I was so lucky to have 5 years without treatment but then on my 5 year scan, the tumor was back. This time treatment was really hard and was not very smooth. We attempted the tandem stem cell recovery again but the second one I was catching a virus and my body rejected my own cells and I went into a coma. It was so hard on my family because they did not know whether I would wake up but eventually I did. Now in January 2020, my tumor is back again. It has been very hard to always hear that it is back and that this time there is no conventional treatment, but we still have hope. Mostly I want to spend time with my family, they are my best friends enjoy the beach and soak up the sun.

Sabrina from AZ, Hodgkins Lymphoma


I was first diagnosed with Hodgkin's lymphoma the day after my 19th birthday. Not having much relationship with my family I felt alone and scared. In the process of treatment I was brought to God. I had support from a wonderful family, the Groenwald's, whom offered me a home when I can no longer afford to live on my own. It was rough but they stuck through me. I was having a recurrence of my Lymphoma requiring the most intense treatment of this journey. The Groenwald's stuck with me through my bi-weekly hospital admissions. This trip has allowed us to have a break from cancer. I've never been on a plane or vacation in my life and it was unlike anything I've ever experienced. I'm so grateful for this opportunity to get away and spend a week with the people I love most. In two weeks I'll be starting the process of receiving a bone marrow transplant. I've been scared and stressed about this process but after having this trip, I'm ready. Thank you to everyone who made it possible for my family and I to have this enlightening experience!--

Darbi from IA, Large B-Cell Lymphoma

S. Carolina Adventure

I tested positive for the Epstein Barr virus, which turns into lymphoma because my immunosuppressants made it impossible to fight this virus. This PTLD happens in 1 % of renal transplants. My treatment consists of R-CHOP for 6 treatments. My dad is a farmer and my mom works with intellectually disabled adults. They do not make a lot of money, but do have insurance
We were able to take a trip to Hilton Head South Carolina for a few days. It was so good to get away and take a break from all that was happening at home. I didn't have to think about anything that happened in the last year. We did something everyday that was so fun and enjoyable. This gave us the opportunity to explore Hilton Head and South Carolina. I have never been on the east coast before so getting to experience that with my family was the best. I loved the weather and all of the activities that we were able to do. I am so grateful for the Nikolas Ritschel Foundation and what they did for my family. They went above and beyond for us.--

Melissa from ME, Ewings Sarcoma

Skydiving in Hawaii

After a year of battling cancer and losing my mom to the same illness only weeks after I was diagnosed, myself and my family were drained on all fronts. We'd forgotten what life was like before and without cancer. This trip to Hawaii gave us the chance to reconnect with ourselves and each other, to remember what it feels like to live without illness, and to realize that despite the trauma cancer had caused, we owe so much to the experience because a great deal was gained from this battle. We learned how strong we really are and how fragile life can be which is why it is so important to live every day to the fullest. That's why we wished to have the adventure of a lifetime in Hawaii. Moreover, that's why I wished to skydive in one of the most beautiful places on earth because as my skydiving instructor perfectly said, it was my final "screw you, I won" to cancer.

Max from FL, Acute Lymponhoblastic Leukemia

Golfing in Hawaii

Max was having muscle soreness and breathing issues. The symptoms worsened and he was diagnosed. He had to take a medical leave from the Univ. of Central Florida, where he was studying to become a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist. Max loves golf. Due to treatment, he had to miss going to the Arnold Palmer Invitational golf tournament. Even though Max has been strong and upbeat during this whole process, we could see that he was upset that he was going to have to miss out . We currently live in Orlando, FL, but Max was born in Rockford, IL. His mom and I were raised down the road in Rochelle, IL. (Max's dad)

Elizabeth from IL , Acute Myeloid Leukemia

Cali Wish

Before I was diagnosed with cancer, a typical week for me included attending school, being highly involved with school activities: cheerleading, softball, clubs including officer positions and 4H. I have not been able to participate in life like my peers. Because of my illness, my parents missed a lot of work. They've made sacrifices to support and care for me. While I still have a ways to go, I am making good strides at getting better. A family vacation would be healing for my family.

Cecily from NJ, Medullablastoma

Disney Wish

After a month of unsolved "illness" changed my life forever when a CT scan revealed I had a mass in my brain. With my diagnosis my life was turned upside down. My mom is truly the hero. This would not only make my dream of going to Walt Disney World come true but give me an opportunity to thank my mom in a way I never could on my own.
This past year has been more than difficult. Nik's Wish entered my life at a time I could no longer find that great joy. Nik's Wish gave me something to look forward to on my most challenging days. Some people look for the light at the tunnel but because of the wonderful Nik's Wish community I've been looking for the castle at the end of Main Street.

Nik's Wish is full of beautiful angels that my family and I are beyond grateful for. Thank you for all that you've done to bring light into my life. This foundation is unbelievable. I will never forget this experience and always hold it so close to my heart. Thank you will never be enough.

Kimberlee from NJ, Hodgkins Lymphoma

Disney Wish

Kimberlee just graduated from Rutgers with a degree in Social Work, and is scheduled to begin working for child care services-- and now there is no telling when that will begin. For the last year and 1/2 she has undergone treatment, including a stem cell transplant. In between all this she just lost her father who was also going through Multiple Myeloma. I would love to see her dream of seeing Disney at Christmas come true. (Kimberlee's mom)

We had a wonderful trip in Disney last week, thanks to the Nikolas Ritschel Foundation!

It was a truly amazing week that breathed some new life into all of us. I'm so grateful that I got to share it with my mom, Aunt Kathy, and Tina. A huge thank you to my wish coordinator Denise for organizing and putting together a perfect trip.

John from IL , AL Osteosarcoma

Hiking in Hawaii

I was in my last month of my freshmen year at college when I finally saw a doctor for the pain and swelling in my left shoulder. I found out that I had osteosarcoma. I have always loved exploring and being outside and connecting with nature, and my cancer has, for a long time, deprived me of the opportunity to do so. My parents, who have obviously been through all the hardships of treatment along with me, could really use a relaxing vacation somewhere warm...

Caitlin from AL, Fighting Hodgkins Lymphoma

Swimming with Dolphins in Hawaii

(Caitlin is autistic so I am helping her with this Carol Brooks) Caitlin began to have painful and swollen lymph nodes about a year ago . She had to endure 9 months of pain before she even had the correct diagnoses. Since she has begun treatment she has suffered hair loss, nausea, and pain from chemotherapy drugs. But the most heart breaking thing is we will not be able to complete our project to see all 50 states, a project we began about 10 years ago and hoped to finish in the next year. Caitlin is very heart broken that the trip will have to be postponed in the best case or forgotten in the worst case. this trip would help Caitlin to recover from treatment and give her something to look forward too. - Hawaii

Thank you for giving Caitlin and all of us this wonderful gift. and we really appreciate being chosen to have this gift.

Destiny from AR, Fighting Wilms Tumor


It would give me hope and a reward for facing this head on and for being strong and brave. I would love a Mac laptop or desktop with a printer.

"Thank you so much for this blessing!"

Bailey from AR, Fighting Germ Cell Tumor


It would help my family to provide me the opportunity to pursue my love of music in college, since instruments are not provided and were currently experiencing a significant financial burden

Savannah from IL, Fighting Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma

Meet Sutton Foster

Everyone at the cancer center and Swedish American have been absolutely amazing. It has been an incredibly long journey and I feel as if I'm finally starting to be able to live life again. Obviously, no one expects to get a cancer diagnosis, but especially not at age 23. But I think my positivity and optimism has helped me immensely through all of this. I know that being negative or upset isn't going to help me heal or move forward. I have also received the nickname "Wonder Woman". I want to inspire other people who are going through something like this and show them that there is always hope, love, and support from everyone around them. Somehow I managed to keep a smile on my face during this journey and I want to share that with others. I would also love the opportunity to do something with my family. I think it would help put these bad days behind us and give us a nice distraction from cancer.

Anthony from GA, Fighting Rhabdonayosarcoma

Busch Gardens

I am a 19 year old young adult who was enjoying life until I got diagnosed with cancer. I enjoyed playing basketball, swimming, exercising, riding my bike, hanging out with friends, eating out. Now I can only swim and I miss my fun life.

This will provide support for us to go on a vacation to Tampa Bay FL. I always wanted to go to Busch Gardens. This would be the perfect celebration after treatment is over.

Brenda from CA, Fighting Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia


I have had cancer for 5 years now. Never once did I ever finish a treatment. This has been a huge financial burden to my family. Now my T-cell immunotherapy treatment requires me to fly to Philadelphia every three months, putting my parents on another financial strain. This is why I would like to ask for a grant. My fiancee and I would like to get married and the cost of a wedding is going to be hard for them while they're trying to pay bills, groceries, gas and save up for my trips to Philadelphia. It doesn't have to be much, but a little something goes a long way.

Samantha from AR, Fighting Anaplastic Astrocytoma

Family Vacation

Throughout Samantha's treatment process she has done extremely well in trying to keep a positive mindset despite virtually all aspects of her life being disrupted. She has been 100% compliant with all of her treatment recommendations. It is hoped that her application for a wish will be approved so that she can receive a much deserved emotional boost and respite in follow up to her cancer journey.

Savannah from IL, Fighting Anaplastic Large Cell Lymphoma


Everyone at the cancer center and Swedish American have been absolutely amazing. It has been an incredibly long journey and I feel as if I'm finally starting to be able to live life again. Obviously, no one expects to get a cancer diagnosis, but especially not at age 23. But I think my positivity and optimism has helped me immensely through all of this. I know that being negative or upset isn't going to help me heal or move forward. I have also received the nickname "Wonder Woman". I want to inspire other people who are going through something like this and show them that there is always hope, love, and support from everyone around them. Somehow I managed to keep a smile on my face during this journey and I want to share that with others. I would also love the opportunity to do something with my family. I think it would help put these bad days behind us and give us a nice distraction from cancer.

We can't thank you & Nik's Wish enough! It was a trip of a lifetime. We had so much fun! Mahalo!!!!  

Samantha from TN, Fighting B-Cell ALL

Family Trip to Arizona

I was diagnosed with B-Cell ALL December 24th 2017. My treatment. Will go through April/June of 2020. My life has been put on a pretty big hold, I haven't been able to work and being around the public in times where my counts are compromised could be life threatening. I go the okay to start back school this fall (2018) and I will be doing all online classes. I am so excited to be able to feel like I am making progress again in life, but I am in need of a laptop to do my school work. Not having income for 6 months and I just got the approval for disability, I am now having to play catch-up on bills and medical bills. I'm not sure how I can make a laptop for school fit into my budget...

Malcom from AL, Fighting Renal Cell Carcinoma & Osteosarcoma

Disney Vacation

Things have been crazy, I graduated high school and wanted dot take culinary arts. Then to be diagnosed with 2 different cancers at the same time changed everything. My parents have 5 kids. I am number 2 of 5 and I'm constantly in and out of the hospital and my parents stay with me. My siblings miss us and we miss them. It is hard. I wish we could all go to Disney World and have fun together.

Ramone from CA, Fighting Metastatic Osteosarcoma

Super bowl

My life was normal. I was able to walk, run and play football and now I have been diagnosed with cancer and I have a broken femur.

It would help me tremendously if I may get comfortable transportation to the Super Bowl

Allison from MS, Fighting Oligodendroglia brain tumor


At 16 years old, I was diagnosed with an oligodendroglia brain tumor in March 2015 and had brain surgery to remove the tumor. This surgery left me unable to speak and my right side extremely weak. After intense therapy, I regained the ability to speak and walk unassisted. I have been a patient at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital since my diagnosis. In October 2018 I had a recurrence and my 2nd brain surgery to remove multiple areas of tumor. After my brain surgery I developed seizures and I am no longer able to drive or work. I am almost finished with my 6 weeks of radiation therapy and will start chemo therapy after radiation is complete. I would love to be able to go to a beach or Disney Cruise and just relax and recharge and get my mind off of cancer and everything it has taken away from me.

Corey from TX, Fighting positive lymphatic acute leukemia


I went to the ER for, blacking out, cold and hot chills, shortness of breath etc. that is when they did many blood works and was determined that I had leukemia and transferred me to another hospital by ambulance, they transferred me to MD Anderson cancer center in Houston Texas, they did a bone marrow which confirmed I had Philadelphia positive lymphatic acute leukemia. my whole world turned upside down, as I just had a son who just turned two, I got married and we bought our first home. now everything has changed so suddenly. we have no income once so ever. I cant work for at least a year and a half. my doctor told me to come to this website to try and apply with yall. please get in touch with me if possible. thank you.

Justin from IL, Fighting Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor

Guy Fieri

I was diagnosed in June of 2016 with DSRCT which is an extremely rare and aggressive form of soft tissue sarcoma. It has been an extremely long two and a half years of constant treatment and hardship for myself and my family. I think getting this grant is exactly what myself and my family needs. It would be a much needed break to forget about everything and just be free again, even if it is for a short amount of time. Mentally i think it would do wonders for myself as i have been struggling in that department for the last few months.

John from IL, Fighting Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor

Last wish with Friends

Johnny called me and told me he was on his way to the hospital when I jumped in my car and headed down there, I walked into the room when the doctor told us he isn't certain but it looked like lymphoma. 3 days in the hospital and he was transferred via ambulance to U of I hospital Chicago. After 2 days there they couldn't give us a definitive diagnoses, we received a call from a doctor at Comer Childrens who had us come in for a discussion. It went then we discovered Johnny has DSCRT, which is predominately a male pediatric cancer.

Johnny had radiation, chemo, Hi-Pec surgery and a stem cell transplant.

Johnny was NED for almost a year. On his scan in October it was discovered tumors were progressing, in December it was yet again progressing.

Micah from WA, Fighting Ewings Sarcoma

Swimming with Manta Rays

In Dec. of 2017 I was diagnosed with Ewing Sarcoma. The tumors were found in my right pelvis, spine and soft tissues. I went through a year of aggressive chemo and radiation treatments, leaving me exhausted and tired. But now that I am done with treatment I am back to continuing my education in Marine Biology at Western Washington University. I would like to go to Hawaii to scuba dive and see the amazing sea life, and enjoy some relaxing time with my family.

Alicia from MI, Fighting Brain Tumor

Universal Studios Vacation

was diagnosed at the age of 13 with a Polymoxoid Astrocytoma. 2 1/2 years ago I thought would be my last chemo treatment unfortunately in March of 2018 the tumor began to grow. I started a new treatment and was very hopeful but due to sever side effects my doctor stopped it for now with hopefully news of a new plan in the next few weeks.

I was referred to this organization by a young lady named Brittany who took a trip to Universal Studios. I have been experiencing lots of stress and anxiety due to the unknown of what type of treatment i will be facing and could use a getaway for me and my family.

Curtis from FL, Fighting Pituitary Carcinoma

New York City

Before my diagnosis, I had a strong interest in becoming a physician. After my diagnosis, surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy treatments, my interest became a determination. My personal experience as a patient really helped me to understand how to become a compassionate and caring physician to all patients. I believe that my diagnosis did not hinder me but has empowered me to become an empathetic Surgical treatment and recovery is very stressful both for my family and I. At times I know it overwhelmed my family to watch me suffer from pain and struggle through recovery. A period of rest will help my family and I to truly rejuvenate and bond together by releasing the stressful past memories and celebrating the current and future times we can spend together.

Alexandra from FL, Fighting Leukemia ALL

Cali Vacation

Hello my name is Alexandra Suazo, I'm 20 years old and i live in Florida. i have a husband and a one year old son. i relapsed on March 2018. 2 years after completing the first time that i was diagnosed with leukemia all. its been very hard since theres not a lot of recourse for my age but thanks to you guys i know i can count on you ! i would love to go on a vacation and forget about treatment for a little bit and enjoy life and feel free.

Ethan from IL, Fighting Testicular Cancer

Cali Vacation

Before diagnosis I liked hanging out with my friends, playing in a band, going to work & deciding on a career. Right now nearing the end of treatment, I spend a lot of time on the couch just getting out of the house to go to treatments. For the past 6 months I haven't been able to be very social and my family has spent all of their extra time caring for me. A Nik Wish would allow us to spend time together having fun not revolving around doctors or treatments

Kaylee from, IL, Fighting Hodgkin's Lymphoma

Disney Vacation

I was diagnosed with stage 3 Hodgkin's Lymphoma on May 4, 2018. I was getting ready to graduate from high school and celebrate my 18th birthday. Instead I had to get ready to start chemotherapy. During my graduation, all I could think about was the fact that I have cancer. My dream would be to celebrate with my family at Disney World. Disney World in Orlando is our favorite place to be. I would love to have something to be excited about to get me through the rest of my treatment. This would also give me a chance to thank my family for always being there for me, and to spend time with my siblings. I had to be away from them so much during treatment. I really appreciate the care I have been given during treatment, but it would really be nice to have some fun for a change!!!

Dalaney from IN, Fighting Hodgkin's lymphoma

Hawaii Vacation

After discharged when I had my first outpatient appointment with my Oncologist, the doctor's nurse told me about Nik's Wish, I was very excited to learn that just because I turned 18 in October I may still get a chance to enjoy a wish of my own. My life has been on hold for the last six months, I have lost opportunities to spend time with friends and do the fun things that kids my age are doing. I've not felt well and been very scared about being sick. I've thought about all the awesome possibilities for a wish and would like to be able to share my wish with my support system, my family. The four of us just talk about everything. Sharing my fears and what kind of wish I might make. Between Mom and Dad one is always with me during visits and tests, making me feel strong like I can do anything and there is nothing to worry about. I would like to take my family on a tropical beach vacation

Emily from VA, Fighting Osteosarcoma

Disney Vacation

I was a sophomore at Virginia Commonwealth University who has just signed up for her fall semester classes. Life was going great. I had just declared my second major and signed a lease for a new apartment. However, I noticed something off about my leg. I researched and one of the possible things was cancer. I thought theres no way this could happen to me. Flash forward to 2 weeks later and I'm starting my first chemotherapy treatment, had to sublease my apartment, moved back home, and removed from school.

I first heard about your organization by researching young adult cancer resources (since there are not a lot). Then I stumbled across the Facebook page, which led me to the website and I thought it was such an amazing thing so I applied.

Robert from IL, Fighting Desmoplastic Small Round Cell Tumor

Last Wish Vacation

A junior in high school, active with friends, graduated, but home due to treatment. Large family makes it difficult to do things together. We would like the opportunity to get everyone together. Robert has 9 siblings with their own family

Haley from IL, Fighting Hodgkins Lyphoma

Hawaii Vacation

As I was starting my first year of college for nursing, my second semester I found out I had stage 2 Hodgkin's lymphoma. After many many biopsies and tests, I had two cycles of an extreme harsh chemotherapy called ICE. Each treatment was for 3 days and I had to stay in the hospital each time. It worked!!! I was so happy!! My PET scan was clear and it was the best Christmas present I could get!! I am about to start radiation for 2 weeks and it is twice a day. Once I am finished with radiation I will have a stem cell transplant to completely kill off any chance of having it come back. I am excited to go be finished and go back to school and reach my goal of being an oncology nurse to help others during their difficult times. I am ready for a much needed break and to relax after all this stress and worry!

Eli from PA, Fighting Neuroblastoma

Standburg Prog 6 Guitar

Over the last 14 years of being in treatment, I've missed a lot of school and spent several years traveling back and forth from our home in Little Rock to the hospital in Philadelphia so I could receive treatment. I was never able to play sports in school so my interest turned to music. I got my first guitar 6 years ago. 2 years ago we moved permanently to Philadelphia. We moved away from my school, our family, and all of my friends. Playing guitar has been a constant companion, a way for me to express myself, and has been very healing for me. I've starting writing my own music and my goal is to be able to produce my songs. My wish would be to have my dream guitar, a Strandberg Prog 6, a MacBook Pro to run production software, and the equipment that would help me record and produce my own music.

Jazmyn from SC, Fighting Synovial Sarcoma

New York City

When I was 19 (last year), I had a l lump on my upper thigh that kept getting larger. When I finally went to the doctor, I learned that I had stage 4 synovial sarcoma that had spread into my abdomen. I had to have multiple surgeries and a lot of chemotherapy/radiation. I'm still getting treatment now but my doctor said I can travel and he think it will be good for me. I've been so sick and I just want a break. I really want to go to New York City. I've never been there and I hear it's awesome. I want to sightsee and be able to go into some of the famous stores and ride in a carriage in central park. I just really need a break. I'm sitting getting treatment now from yet another infection.

Noelle from WI. Fighting Acute Myeloid Leukemia

Disney Vacation

I was in the happiest place on earth when I got my diagnosis. My family had just arrived for our week-long DisneyWorld vacation that we had been looking forward to for months. We drove 18 hours from Wisconsin to Orlando eagerly awaiting our magical vacation! It's a moment that I'll never forget. Sitting at a bird show watching my mom break down into tears on the phone when they told us that I had AML Its important to me that my family does not always associate the happiest place on earth with the hardest time in our lives. That's why for my wish, I am asking for another chance at a Disney vacation with my family.

Breanna from KY, Fighting Rectal Cancer

Yellowstone Park

I was 22 years old with an almost 2 year old daughter when I was diagnosed with rectal cancer. I struggled alot with being a full time mom to a wild two year old and also focusing enough on my health to beat cancer and be there to watch her grow up. I was so lucky with the support system I've been blessed with. My boyfriend has stayed with me every step and side effect of the way.

I would love to be able to somehow celebrate beating cancer and all that my body has been through. It's amazing to look back on and I want to look at it positively. But with bills pilled up, medical and otherwise, that's something that's not in the cards. My wish would be to take a trip out west with my caretaker and boyfriend and get to enjoy nature and see parts of the country I haven't been able to.

Katie from PA, Fighting Myeloid Leukemia

Yellowstone Park

In March 2013, after ignoring my symptoms for months, a hematologist/oncologist walked into my room at the emergency department to tell me and my parents that I had leukemia.
Now that I'm in the early stages of recovery, my family still has a lot of adjustments to make to keep me safe and healthy. My mom has been with me every single step of the way, spending almost every night in the hospital sleeping in a lounge chair so that I would never be alone. My dad works so hard and would come see me every night. He would cook me my favorite foods and bring it in for me while he ate hospital food for dinner just so he could spend more time with me. My twin brother literally saved my life by donating his stem cells to me, an experience that involved a lot of needle pokes and uncomfortable side effects. My 13 year old sister had to deal with my mom being away from her for so long, which is so hard at her age.

Isaac from NY, Fighting Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

Hawaii Vacation

The need of a respite or vacation for cancer patients cannot possibly be overstated. Everyone agrees that people need a break from their nine to five job every so often and I don't believe that the average job is anywhere nearly as stressful or unpleasant as being treated for cancer. The need is especially great for young adults at an age where a person really needs their friends. For many of us, cancer causes serious difficulty and distancing in some of our most important relationships at a time when we need them the most, understandably leading to even more emotional turmoil. And it isn't just the patients themselves that need breaks but the caregivers and loved ones need it as well. I didn't get cancer, WE got cancer. My mother was definitely just as emotionally stressed as I was at times (probably even more so) and my dad too.

Erin from PA, Fighting Hodgkin's Lymphoma

Disney Vacation

She was diagnosed with stage 4B Hodgkin's Lymphoma at the age of 22 during her Junior year of college. She is a vocal performance major studying opera at Seton Hill University in Greensburg PA. Erin had planned to go back to college for the Spring 2019 semester, but unfortunately, we found out at her 3 month post treatment PET scan that her HL had returned. She has now undergone 2 of three additional chemo sessions and is currently on the path for a stem cell transplant to occur at the beginning of April. She has been through so much......she has amazed me with her strength and grace. Most of the time she has a very positive attitude, but this diagnosis and reoccurrence has been very scary for her and for all of causes a lot of anxiety! Erin just wants to return to her old life, but it has been put on hold until she beats this cancer.

Jerri from AR, Fighting NK / T Cell Lymphoma

Florida Vacation

Jerri has always wanted to swim with dolphins and go to Florida with all her family. She wants to swim with dolphins with her siblings. We unfortunately had to get into savings from our recent diagnosis treatment. We would love a chance to take that trip to Florida and stay on the beach with our family. Jerri also has wanted a Macbook forever and it was something we wanted to do for her graduation, she would be happy for one for sure because I don't think we can afford it at this time anymore. She missed out on so much her senior year she's diagnosed with this rare cancer and was hospitalized on her 18th birthday. I just want to see my girl to see some light at the end of this.

Sara from IL, Fighting Gray Zone Lymphoma

Wedding Dress

My name is Mary Maxey and I would like to apply for a wish on behalf of my daughter Sara, she would never apply on her own. My wish for her is for her to be able to have her dream wedding gown. She met a wonderful young man, Miguel Ramos. Miguel fell in love with her while she was very sick, but didn't realize how serious it would turn out to be. They maintained a long distance relationship for almost a year throughout her treatments. He traveled to Chicago to be with her during one of her chemo treatments. After all they had been through in the past year he surprised her with a marriage proposal in July of 2017.

Shannon from CA, Fighting Lymphoma

Austin City Music Festival

My name is Carissa Menard, and I am Shannon's sister-in-law. I had Leukemia when I was a teenager, so when Shannon was diagnosed with Stage 3 Lymphoma a month ago I was devastated to know the suffering and emotional pain she and our family were about to go through. When I was going through my treatment, I was eligible for Make-a-Wish since I was under 18 and it was one of the only blessings of my treatment and something that allowed me to look forward to something. It was a powerful emotional motivator. I came across your organization and saw that Shannon would be eligible for a wish through your organization and instantly knew this could be an amazing motivator to increase her sense of hope during this time

Isabella from IN

Meet Luke Bryan

"I was a college student at Indiana University- Purdue University, Indianapolis. I was a tourism, conventions, 4 event management BS. My diagnosis really shook my world. I went through a lot of anxiety, isolation, jealousy of my friends living and fulfilling their dreams, emotional strain, and I questioned everything. My cancer is terminal and the doctors have given me 6-12 months to live with chemo.

My biggest wish would be to see Luke Bryan in concert. He is one of my biggest idols for years. He has been given so much sadness and tragedy in his life. He has lost his brother and sister, yet he continues to pursue his life, ambitions, passions and has raised not only his own kids, but his sister's kids as well. Seeing Luke Bryan would bring me closure and be at peace when I die knowing how hard I have tried to achieve my dreams"

Joseph from NJ, Fighting Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

Fishing Trip

I still cannot believe it. After graduating from Stockton University in 2017 with a degree in Criminal Justice, I was accepted into the Ocean County Police Academy. Becoming a police officer was my life's dream and I worked hard in the Academy. 10 days after being sworn in as police officer I was told I had cancer.

My favorite things to do are spend time at the beach, surfing and fishing. I miss it. I wish I could take a trip to a beach and catch a fish, and perhaps a wave.

Max from FL, Fighting Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

Golfing in Hawaii

Max was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (A.L.L.). He had to take a medical leave from the University of Central Florida, where he was starting his studies to become a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA). Golf is his absolute favorite thing to do when he has some free time. Even though Max has been strong and upbeat during this whole process, we could see that he was upset that he has missed out on so much.

Cinthia from PA, Fighting Medullblastoma

Shopping Spree

I am studying Recreational Therapy at Temple University. I was diagnosed with medullblastoma and I have been receiving treatment at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) since then. I received 6 weeks of daily radiation, and I am currently doing chemotherapy. I am reaching out for a wish for clothes and a shopping spree. During my treatment, my body has changed a lot and I am learning to accept my body the way it is, but my clothes have stopped fitting well. Wearing new clothes would help me feel more confident. I am working with my therapist to start an Instagram to empower other women going through cancer treatment.

Brittany from MI, Fighting Neuroblastoma

Universal Studios

A little bit after my birthday and before Christmas I was diagnosed with a rare cancer. I was told not to work or go to school and focus on my health. It is really hard when i was the only one working in my family trying to take care of my little sister and mother. My mother is a paranoid schizophrenic and has been for years. We have never let having less keep us down. We are a strong and proud family but it has been very hard to try and have a normal life lately. Anything really helps, weather it be a donation or life experience me and my family would be very thankful.

Max & Arthur from IL, Fighting Melanoma

Chicago Bulls Night

Max and Arthur - brothers diagnosed with Melanoma enjoyed a cool night at the Chicago Bulls Game!

Alec from IL, Fighting Neuroblastoma

Vegas - Gordon Ramsey's Kitchen

Alec just turned 21 and his wish was to go to Vegas! His family had an awesome time at Gordon Ramsey's Kitchen and received an autographed menu!

Amanda from IL Ewings Fighting Sarcoma

Disney Trip with Family

"The opportunity made me appreciate the time with my family more. I'm with them every day, but not necessarily "making memories" Taking time is important and shouldn't be overlooked or pushed to the side for another day. Time should be made now in the preset! Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart"

Bea from IL Fighting Paraganglioma

New York City

Bea shared with us -- "Visiting New York had always been one of my dreams. I knew that I was destined to go one day, if I worked hard enough for it. Unfortunately, earlier this year, I received the worst news of my entire life, a cancer diagnosis. It put a halt to life, as I knew it. I had to give up a lot things, including my dream of traveling. ... Nik's foundation decided to grant my "wish. "I felt blessed, and that cancer didn't take everything away from me.

Chandler from TX, Fighting Ewings Sarcoma

Drive a Nissan GTR

Chandler and his father had a great time today. They took this brand new GTR for about an hour today and didn't even get a ticket! Thank you all for you did to make this blessing happen!

Dominique from IL, Fighting Ewings Sarcoma

Family trip to Sea World

"Everyone had an excellent time and cancer wasn't on anybody's mind. The trip made me even more grateful for the times I get to spend with my loved ones"

Drake from CA, Fighting Synovial Sarcoma

Family trip to Disney

"I spend most of my time at home between treatments waiting for my body to heal. This makes me feel really isolated, knowing that most people my age feel invincible and can't relate to what I'm going through at all. My family is very supportive but the stress is starting to get to them too. This respite allowed us to have a time together to feel normal, without the stress of cancer. Thank you!"

Dwaine from IL, Fighting Sarcoma

Honeymoon in Florida

Dwaine and his fiancée had a wonderful time in Florida - taking a much needed break from cancer!
"This trip provided lasting memories that we can hold onto no matter what the outcome of the present situation will be."

Jack from IL, Fighting Ewings Sarcoma

San Diego Surfing

"I'm no health genius, but I didn't need an MD to understand what came out of his (the doctor's) mouth next: "Jack, you have cancer." Quick and painful like a Band-Aid, the room was so silent .... I am terrified because I don't know what comes after this. What comes after life with cancer? The only thing that has gotten me through this experience has bee my family and that includes my girlfriend... There is nothing I could do to repay them for all that they have done for me and how much love I felt from them every hour of every day....I would like to go to San Diego to see the zoo and relax on the beach. Just enjoy family time not thinking about how cancer has changed all of our lives."

Jake from IL, Fighting Spindle Cell Sarcoma

Zip lining over Gators!

"I am grateful for the vacation that the Nikolas Ritschel Foundation helped my family and I receive. It was tremendously fun and offered my family and I chances to go to new places and enjoy new experiences. Most importantly, though, it offered a break from the chaotic life style we had to deal with going to and from the hospital all the time. I'm glad we had such an opportunity to spend time as a family and to out and enjoy ourselves. This foundation really does a lot of good for a lot of people. Keep it up! Thank you"

Josh from PA, Fighting Ewings Sarcoma

Family vacation to Florida

"I think everyone who is battling cancer ( and their caregivers) "hit the wall" at some point. Well this respite gave us something to look forward to and enjoy in a carefree way! We all came back re-energized and closer than ever!!! ... Ready to face "the scans" and their outcome." "Your wonderful foundation helped make it possible for our family to take the trip of a lifetime with our son Josh, a Ewing's Sarcoma survivor. We could never thank you enough!! God bless you all!"

Kim from IL, Fighting Breast Cancer

iPad Air Computer

"The iPad air would be helpful to me when I have long doctor's appointments and when I go back to school (hopefully to become a pharmacy technician. "

Liela from IL, Fighting Neuroblastoma

Family trip to Disney

Family trip to take a break from cancer! What an incredible time for us to celebrate the end of treatment.

Max from IL, Fighting Melanoma

Family trip to Disney World

Max's five year old daughter exclaimed, "This is going to be the best day in the whole world!"

Michael from IL, Fighting Leukemia

Lollapalooza Day

Foundation gets some help from generous donators to bring big smiles to young adult cancer patients at Lollapalooza!

Nate from UT, Fighting Alveolar Soft Tissue Sarcoma

Trip to Cali to visit family

"I had been falling into a routine that wasn't very productive and hadn't been getting out much because I was tired and sore. I really needed to get out of the house and this respite worked out perfectly. It was good for my dad because he got to visit with his mom and brother. We had a really relaxing time. This trip was great, please make sure to give as many people as possible this opportunity. This respite impacted my outlook on everyday living - I learned that giving is good!"

Nicole from NJ, Fighting Ewings Sarcoma

Trip to the Jersey Shore

"Cancer not only affected me, but the loved ones around me. My mother and brother were put under a lot of stress. This respite provided relaxation for them. We made amazing memories we will never forget! Thank you so much"

Paul from MA, Fighting Rhabdomyosarcoma

Celebration of Life Party

After a year of bad news and uncertainties, I want this birthday party to be a celebration of life. It will be my first real birthday celebration ever and also serve as my "coming out" event . Also, I know it will be a well­ deserved break and moment of peace for people like my mother who has quietly struggled while staying strong to support me.

Robert from MN, Fighting Ewings Sarcoma

Family trip to Florida

This opportunity impacted us beyond words! It really helps you appreciate the smallest of things in life. At the initial diagnosis we didn't know it would ever be able to sit on the beach as a family. My son absolutely loved every aspect of the trip - he still talks about it daily. It really meant al lot to be able to fully focus on him and us for a full week without have to leave him for appointments.

Shawn from NJ, Fighting Hodgkins Lymphomia

Trip to Dollywood

"I needed a break from being stuck in the hospital doing chemo. We had a chance to just relax and not worry so much Thank you all so very much!"

Stephanie from PA, Fighting Ewings Sarcoma

Family Trip to Disney

"I truly hope you realize the miracle you provided for this special young lady. You provided her with a trip and activities that she would never been able to experience without your generous gift...When she returned from this trip, her smile came from deep within her heart. I have never seen her this happy in the 15 months she has been receiving treatment...May God bless you all for this healing time for Stephanie as she was able to forget about her disease during this special time with her parents."

Uhura from IL, Fighting Cell Sarcoma

Trip to New York City

I had to take medical leave from college due to surgery and chemotherapy. I have had a difficult time finding a job because I am not able to consistently commit to a schedule due to my treatment. I rely heavily on my friends and family for support. I think a trip to New York City would be a break away from the cancer for my family and me. f haven't had many opportunities to travel and explore parts of the country that I want to see because of all of the medical treatment that I have undergone over the last several years. I also think that this trip will provide me with the opportunity to spend time with my family outside of the hospital and my treatments.

Veronika from MA, Fighting T cell Lymphoma

iPhone 6 & Wig

I was diagnosed with T-cell lymphoma last year and have been in treatment ever since. It has affected my life in every way possible. I haven't been able to work or go to school or do anything else because I've been getting so much chemotherapy. ... I have a three year-old daughter who I need to live for. ... I am asking for help to get a wig because with the ... I think it will also be nice for my daughter to see me with hair, even if it's a wig. I am asking for a cell phone because mine just broke and now I don't have a way to talk to my family easily and I can't text my relatives and friends who give me emotional support"

William from PA, Fighting Ewings Sarcoma

Family Trip to Disney

"Our family respite was a wonderful experience with a myriad of emotions, many smiles, much laughter and some tears. We returned home with renewed vigor and drive to help Bill confront, battle and, excuse my words, KICK CANCER'S ASS!!!! Regarding the photo, Bill was not aware of your logo at the time the photo was taken. However he was quite insistent of having that picture taken. I hope I'm not out of line for saying this, but It too brings a smile to my face to think that maybe Nik was somehow an influence."

William from IL, Fighting Hodgkins Lymphomia

LSU vs. Gators Game

"My husband and I can't thank you enough for putting a smile on our son's face. It's the first genuine smile we've seen in months. It was so refreshing to have the brothers together for this event also. I must admit that when we were on the field and we saw how overjoyed William was as the players ran on to the field we both became overwhelmed with emotion and joy ourselves. More than a few tears fell but for the first time in a long time they were tears of joy"

Nate from UT, Fighting Alveolar Soft Tissue Sarcoma

Freedom with a chairlift

Nate needed a way to get down the stairs so he could spend time with family --- this cool chair did the trick!

Amanda from IL Fighting Ewings Sarcoma

New Year's Eve in Chi Town

Enjoying New Year's Eve on the Roof Top in Downtown Chicago with family and friends.

Drake from CA, Fighting Synovial Sarcoma

Lollapalooza Weekend in Chi Town

Rocking good times at Lolla! Drake and sister Kristen get to spend time together celebrating being cancer free!

Jesus from PA, Fighting Testicular Cancer

Disney Fun!

Hi my name is Jesus, i am 21 years old. I was a student studying Information technology and also a young adult chasing my dream before i was diagnosed with cancer. Being diagnosed with cancer effected me and my family in many ways, it brought us together but it also effected us financially and emotionally. I wish i can take the family to Disney world so they can take time off stressing and the real world.

The trip was great! Me and my family had so much fun. Thank you so much for everything.

Greg from IL, Fighting Testicular Cancer

Family reunion in Clearwater, Florida

Thank you so so much. We have been very happy lately because of your family. I will never be able to explain how much this means to all of us. We could never take a trip like this it's unbelievable. I'm still in shock. I just gave my granddaughter goggles and a snorkel. She said grandma thank you, thank you, thank you, and gave me a big kiss. Your kindness has made so many people happy. God Bless you and your family.