Wish comes true for little Justin Hardin
by BETTIE MARLOWE, Banner Staff Writer
Sep 11, 2011 | 1165 views | 0 0 comments | 18 18 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A MAKE-A-WISH send-off party was held at Shane’s Rib Shack for Justin Hardin, front, who was diagnosed with leukemia at the age of 3. From left are Ashley Boyd, manager with Shane’s; Make-A-Wish volunteers Pat Fuller and Teresa Shelton; and back, Justin’s parents, Kim and Dave Hardin with sister, Rachel. Justin with his favorite food, ribs, at Shane’s; and being surprised with a cake made especially for him by Cooke’s Food Store.
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Justin Hardin was only 3 when he was diagnosed with leukemia in March 2005. His mother Kim Hardin said, “It has been a long, hard road, but Justin is doing much better. He goes every six months for blood work.

In school, Justin is an “A” student. He loves to be outside and the family lives on a farm, which gives him that “outdoor setting.” He shows cows and loves to fish and play baseball — much like any 9-year-old. And he has a special wish: “To go where he can swim and fish.”

Make-A-Wish volunteers Pat Fuller and Teresa Shelton made arrangements with the Make-A-Wish Foundation to send Justin and his family to Myrtle Beach, S.C., for a week from Sept. 8-13.

Justin and his 2-year-old sister and their family will have the use of a van, and be provided lodging on the beach, along with beach toys, and money for fuel, meals and snacks. And his love of fishing is not neglected. He’ll have enough money for rental of fishing equipment, bait and, oh yes, a fishing license.

Shane’s Rib Shack gave Justin a send-off party, which included his favorite food — ribs.

Cooke’s Food Store designed a cake especially for Justin — trimmed in baseballs with depictions of streams of water perfect for the fishing pole. And Central Drug celebrated the event with a balloon bouquet.

The family left on Thursday and will return Tuesday.