By Laura MacPherson
Sarah McClintock's wish for a fenced yard for her horse, Aly, was granted by Make-A-Wish of South Carolina today. Terry and Beth, Aly's parents shared the occasion with a party at the family's Greer home.
Sarah McClintock loves her horse, Aly, given to her for her 11th birthday present. And Make-A-Wish of South Carolina loves to grant wishes like the one Sarah asked.
The McClintock family home in Greer was decked out on Saturday with balloons and festive decorations and cake and ice cream for a Wish Party celebrating Sarah and Aly. The little girl who began riding horses when she was six, wished for a fence, a riding ring and jumps so she and her horse would be home together.
Aly has been kept at another location because there were no sufficient fences or barn units for her at Sarah’s home. A barn unit remains to be constructed before Aly can be permanently relocated, but every step of completion is a step that brings Sarah and her friend closer together.
"Make-A-Wish told us what they could do about having our yard fenced in so we could have Aly at our house, and I wanted that so she could be with us,” Sarah said.
A few days before her 11th birthday, Sarah was diagnosed with a brain tumor. She'd been having headaches, and when the family took her in to see a doctor, they were shocked to learn that what they thought was a minor problem was instead serious.
Surgery to remove the tumor was scheduled immediately. After a successful surgery, Sarah then went through radiation treatment. She is now undergoing chemotherapy to prevent the tumor from returning.
Sarah was taking riding lessons once a week before she was diagnosed. She cannot wait to ride again once she regains her strength.
“This has been very, very hands-on,” Beth McClinton, Sarah's mother, said. “The volunteers have been out here every weekend for the last three weekends helping out and working. We could never have done it without them.”
The volunteers were handing out purple hats with Aly's name printed on them, the family dogs carried balloons attached to their collars, and everyone was smiling and enjoying the festivities.
Sarah’s wish was scheduled as part of World Wish Day, April 29. Make-A-Wish will be conducting wishes across the United States and 47 other countries to commemorate the annual celebration.