Born with a heart defect requiring multiple surgeries over time, Chicago-born Eric DelaTorre had only one big wish—to become a superhero. Candace Stine, account executive at GA Communication Group and an official “Wish Granter” with the Illinois chapter of Make-A-Wish America, learned about Eric’s desire—and promptly set about helping to make Eric’s dream come true. It was Stine’s first Make-A-Wish assignment, and she had the pleasure of watching Eric became a superhero — “Blue Steel” — as part of a gala fourth-birthday celebration much to the delight of his friends, parents and sister, Sofia.
Stine worked with many others to make Eric’s wish come true, including a fellow wish granter, members of the Chicago Police Department, local WeAreCosplay members and volunteers with Make-A-Wish Illinois. And Eric was transformed—wearing a customized costume and given a police assignment to protect Chicago from the villains. A helicopter ride over the city revealed trouble at Navy Pier, so Blue Steel was taken to the scene, where he joined forces with other superheroes to conquer the bad guys. After receiving an award for Saving the Day, Eric celebrated with his family and friends enjoying a special birthday cake, a giant card and a chance to rub elbows with his fellow good guys.
“It was an amazing day,” says Stine, “honoring a little boy who has overcome so much and is a real-life superhero.”