Patients Harness the Force at Seattle Children’s Thanks to Star Wars

Darth Vader - Blog
Darth Vader introduces himself to patient Noah Mulllin.

Patients and families at Seattle Children’s didn’t have to travel to a galaxy far, far away to follow in the footsteps of Luke Skywalker, famed Jedi Master from Star Wars. Jedi masters made a special trip to the hospital today to help patients and their families harness their inner Force through a private training session.

And that’s not all. Several Star Wars characters from the Light and the Dark side also made a surprise appearance at the hospital. Patients, families and staff were buzzing over the sight of Darth Vader and R2-D2 walking the halls of the hospital.

The Force was definitely awakened as children smiled ear-to-ear as they too became Jedi Masters, each one empowered to overcome whatever lies ahead of them.

What does it take to be a Jedi? It’s more than lightsaber battles and mind tricks. Just ask 7-year-old Brock Hope who received his Jedi certificate today. He couldn’t contain his excitement.

“Today was the best day ever,” said Brock. “I can’t believe I became Jedi,” he added with a huge smile on his face as he held his official Jedi certificate.

Brock - Blog
Brock Hope with a Jedi Master after completing his Jedi training session.

Donnette Hope, Brock’s mother, said the surprise visit not only made Brock’s day, but it made her day too. Their family travels from Port Angeles, Wash., for treatment at Seattle Children’s, which can make for a long day. Brock has regular appointments for rehabilitation and physical therapy and wears casts on both his legs to correct toe walking.

The visit was a nice surprise for him, said Hope. It was different than any hospital visit he’s had before.

“Every experience we’ve had at Seattle Children’s has been an excellent one for us, but the physical therapy and rehabilitation can be a lot for Brock. We get to go home after having a really positive experience. It’s just awesome!”

Taking time away from bedside

For Jade Descharme and her children, Michael and Juniper, the special visit was a nice reprieve away from the bedside of little Sage, Jade’s youngest child.

Micheal and Juniper - Blog
Micheal and Juniper meet and greet with Star Wars characters.

The family has been at Seattle Children’s for three months. Sage was airlifted from the family’s hometown of Butte, Mont., only days after birth. He was diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder which causes excessive growth of his tongue.

“Being at the hospital has become our new normal,” said Descharme. “Everyday we come to say hello to baby brother (Sage) and then go to the playroom. We’re usually the first people here every morning. It gives us a nice break.”

Today, however, was unlike their typical day in the playroom, a place where the entire family is welcome, not just a sick child.

“Today we’re Star Wars fans,” said Deschcarme.