When four-year-old Stephen Drost was asked to make a wish, he didn’t want to go to Disney World. He didn’t want to travel to an exotic place, or meet a famous person. What he wanted was to come back to Northern Maine, see his grandparents, and drive a tractor at his favorite store.
“I like coming here,” said Stephen.
“When Stephen decided he wanted to come back we were more than surprised and thrilled and happy to have him,” said Theriault Equipment Vice President Jesse Theriault.
Stephen spent Thursday morning riding tractors big and small at Theriault Equipment in Presque Isle…handling them like a pro. Then again, he’s done it before. He and his family used to live here in Northern Maine, but last fall, they moved to Washington. Before leaving, he rode the tractors at Theriault and fell in love.
“Theriault had been involved with the family before they left and Stephen was familiar with here and I think it represented a really positive experience for him,” said Kate Vickery, program director for Make A Wish Maine.
And for the little guy, the only thing better than coming back east and driving a tractor, was visiting some of the the people he loves the most.
“Oh my land I wanted to cry, jump up and down, laugh, you know it’s just a mixture of feelings and it was so wonderful when he ran into my arms,” said his grandmother Deborah.
“When I go back in Washington I really wanted them,” said little Stephen.
Little Stephen was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma almost two years ago.
“It was the most helpless feeling that I’ve ever felt in my life…my son, my oldest, my namesake..and here he is battling this illness that at first we didn’t even know what it was,” said his father.
Right now he’s in treatment and his father says he’s doing well. They’re all proud of this growing kid.
“He knows how much we love him and he loves us..and we’ve always been together, we’re a big support team for him,” said his grandmother.
“He’s just trying to live life to the fullest right now,” said his father.
And yes, maybe for this little guy, living life to the fullest is about the simple things. But his wish came true. His family wants to thank Make-A-Wish and Theriault Equipment for making this possible. They’ll return home on Monday.