AVONDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - When most high school grads are thinking about their future, Jaime Gamez has had to focus on the present, fighting a cancer diagnosis day by day.
“I ended up having to do home school for a little bit, and that was hard enough because I was just sick constantly and in the hospital,” said Gamez.
What he really wants to be is a diesel technician. Wednesday, his wish is coming true.
Gamez arrived at the Universal Technical Institute in Avondale under the impression he’d be signing paperwork and taking a tour, but the Make-A-Wish Foundation had something big planned.
“That’s why I am ecstatic to tell you that 100% of your tuition has been paid by the generosity of this group,” announced UTI president and CEO Kim McWaters.
It was a surprise that brought Gamez to tears.
“What a privilege to be able to help someone pursue an education. And think about his wish being granted. He could have chosen anything, and he chose to improve his life, get an education and go to Universal Technical Institute,” said McWaters.
In addition to Make-A-Wish Arizona and UTI, contributors to Gamez’s wish include Daimler Trucks North America, Freightliner, Premier Truck Group, Snap-On Tools, Sunstate Equipment Co. and the TechForce Foundation.
“It’s an amazing thing to see the community come together to make this wish happen,” said Hollie Costello with Make-A-Wish Arizona.
Gamez says not having to worry about the cost of school will help him keep focused on working hard and staying healthy.
“It was a rough path. It was a lot of hard times to go through, and I was able to actually overcome it, go through it. And now I’m here going to start to get my life forward and move forward with everything,” said Gamez.