Dear Rep. Ed Royce,
In 2011, my wish came true. Thanks to Make-a-Wish, I flew to DC with my family to meet President Obama. As a part of of that wish, we were lucky enough to receive a private tour of the US Capitol. As we walked through those halls so steeped in history, we met so many kind staffers who welcomed us into their office. But of everyone we met that day, you were the most gracious and kind of them all.
As our tour came to an end, our guide Burt Caswell mentioned that we could try to make a visit to your office to say hi. So we headed over for an impromptu visit. What was supposed to be a quick chat turned into a 30 minute conversation where we talked about everything from my future plans to our time in DC to some history of our district. That discussion we had was such a special part of my trip. As a kid, I was so amazed that you took that much time out of your busy evening to chat with me. Your words and encouragement truly meant so much to me. It made my trip to the Capitol so much more personal and intimate. That memory of sitting in your office is something that I will never forget. Every time I see the Capitol, I remember our time spent in your office.
After leaving the Capitol and DC, I felt newfound confidence in my fight against leukemia. Having my wish granted was a powerful dose of hope in my treatment and it was the best medicine I received. I felt so much more optimistic about my outcome and resilient in the face of this disease. But it is not lost on me that so much of that energy in my fight was due to the outpouring of support from a community of people like you.
So, I wanted to take a moment to say thank you for being such a big part of my wish and subsequent healing. Your kindness and support made my wish that much more special.
But more than that, this wish and your kindness spurred me to give back. That trip inspired me to create OURA, a social enterprise working to help pediatric patients fight cancer with hope. I am so proud to say that I have launched and I want you to know that you played a significant part in its conception.
As you leave this office, I imagine that you will continue to work to improve the lives of the people around you. The Capitol will certainly be a different place without you. Thank you for your service and I wish you the very best in all your endeavors.
Wishing you a happy, healthy retirement.