A gem of a wish granted.

Sosefina arrives at the airport for her Make-A-Wish trip to Six Flags in California (photo courtesy Make-A-Wish).

Sosefina arrives at the airport for her Make-A-Wish trip to Six Flags in California (photo courtesy Make-A-Wish).

On Saturday, March 12, 2016, a 16-year-old Waipahu “wish teen” named Sosefina learned her wish to go to Six Flags in California was about to come true, but that wasn’t all. Diagnosed with systemic lupus erythematosus, Sosefina has a lot more to worry about than a typical teen should, and when the Jewelers for Children learned of her struggle, they wanted her to shine— with a special gift to last a lifetime.

On that Saturday at Excellent Gems & Diamonds, Sosefina was greeted by Mabel Lau at her store in the Chinese Cultural Plaza, along with co-executive directors Bernard Nunies and Sophia Makaimoku-Young of Hawaii Jewelers Association, to teach Sosefina about what any 16-year-old loves to behold: precious stones. Little did Sosefina know, Mabel is not only a veteran of the jewelry industry of over 43 years; she is also the president of Hawaii Jewelers Association the local affiliate of Jewelers for Children.

Sosefina and one of her wish-granters, pilot Stephen Wheeler, prepare for take off (photo courtesy Make-A-Wish).

Sosefina and one of her wish-granters, pilot Stephen Wheeler, prepare for take off (photo courtesy Make-A-Wish).

From her illustrious collection of precious gemstones, Mabel encouraged Sosefina to try on a beautiful garnet ring, Sosefina’s birthstone. As Sosefina slipped the ring onto her finger, Mabel, Bernard and Sophia revealed to her that the ring was hers to keep—and would be waiting for her when she returned from her wish trip to Six Flags California. Sosefina was speechless.

As Mabel measured Sosefina’s finger for the perfect fit, Stephen Wheeler, one of Sosefina’s wish granters, walked in to join the celebration. But Stephen is more than a wish granter; in his complete pilot uniform, Stephen announced that he and his fellow wish granter, Andrew Van Haecke, both pilots for Allegiant Air, would be flying Sosefina and her family to Six Flags in California themselves—an unusual, above-and-beyond undertaking for any wish granter for their wish kid.

Excellent Gems & Diamonds gifts Sosefina a custom garnet ring (photo courtesy Make-A-Wish).

Excellent Gems & Diamonds gifts Sosefina a custom garnet ring (photo courtesy Make-A-Wish).

Every wish is a unique experience; as unique as the personal struggle a wish child endures during the diagnosis and treatment of a life-threatening medical condition—and this wish is a true gem for a special wish teen, made extra special by the generosity of the Hawaii Jewelers Association and Jewelers for Children. Sosefina took off for Six Flags in California via Allegiant Air, flown by her pilot-wish-granters, to her trip of a lifetime.

Sosefina is one of over 100 local kids with wishes in progress today. Become involved in granting wishes to the children of our community, like Sosefina, by sponsoring a wish, fundraising, volunteering or making a financial gift by visiting hawaii.wish.org.