Jordan, 12, has been a soccer fan for “most of his life”.
“I love to play soccer and watch soccer and see soccer live,” said Jordan. It was that one-track mind that had Jordan asking to meet his favorite player, D.C. United defender Sean Franklin, as his one true wish when he was first referred to Make-A-Wish® Arizona.
“I picked Sean Franklin because, about two years ago, when I was sick at Christmas, my dad called a friend who knew someone at the L.A. Galaxy and Sean Franklin sent me an autographed soccer ball, and a t-shirt and some other things,” said Jordan. “And he didn’t even know me. I thought that was awesome.”
Jordan and his family continued to follow Sean’s career with the Galaxy and, just this year, watched him play with the D.C. United, where Sean continues to be an inspiration for Jordan as he fights his cystic fibrosis.
“When I found out I was going to get to meet him, I was with my friend Sean,” said Jordan. “And then I left just a few days later. It was so amazing, so cool.”
Jordan’s wish to meet Sean included a day of sightseeing before he actually went to the practice field. He wasn’t nervous – he knew Sean would be awesome.
“The coaches showed me around the place and gave me a uniform with shorts, shirt, shoes, socks, even a bag,” said Jordan. “And then they had me go into the locker room, where I met the whole team and finally I met Sean. And he was great.”
In addition to having the day to practice with the team, Jordan was signed as a one-day player for the D.C. United, a contract that he keeps on his desk so he can see it every day. And then, on Sunday, he participated as an official member of the D.C. United, walking out with the team, warming up by kicking back balls to the players, and eventually kicking out the first ball. See a video of Jordan as part of the team from the D.C. United.
“The announcer said my name and I kicked the first ball and the crowd was cheering and they even cheered for my name,” said Jordan. Jordan continued his role as a team member by watching the team from the sidelines, which proved to be the best seats when the team won 3 to 1.
“It was a really good game. Sean almost scored a couple of times,” said Jordan. “After the game, I went to the locker room with the team and Sean gave me his cell number and email. We still text every once in a while, mostly about his games. He’s now just like my friend.”
“I would tell every kid to make sure that you make your wish really cool and to just go for it,” said Jordan when asked what he would tell other wish kids waiting for their one true wish. “No matter if it takes a long time or if you get your wish in a short time, just go for it and make it yours.”