Season of Giving: Make-A-Wish Foundation
PORTLAND, Ore. -- KATU is celebrating the Season of Giving, and all this week, we're showing you ways you can give back to the community.
The Make-A-Wish Foundation hopes to fulfill some holiday dreams for kids and teens fighting terrible diseases.
Trystan Stephens-Tregarth, a senior at Madison High School, is much like any other teenager -- his plate is full with plenty of after-school activities.
"I used to do cross country and soccer; I'm on the swim team, track team, and the dragon boat team," he explained.
It's a lot for anyone to take on, but for Trystan, it's exceptional.
"I was diagnosed with tricuspid atresia... it's affected my breathing. I can't take in as much oxygen as other kids can," he said.
He has had three surgeries for his heart condition since he was a young child, and still faces many challenges ahead of him as an adult.
"The doctors say between 30 and 40 I'm going to have to get a heart transplant... I think by then all the medical technology will be super advanced and it'll be pretty easy," he said.
Even through the toughest of news, Trystan can find a way to smile and find a positive angle.
Make-A-Wish Oregon is giving him another reason to smile this holiday season -- by sending him and his family to Hawaii.
"I want to learn to surf... it's so cold on the Oregon Coast. By the time you get out there, you don't really want to go in - it'll be nice to have warm water," he said.