Wishes and More: Lillian Loves Animals

Updated: August 05, 2019 07:04 PM

Lillian Johannes loves animals, and wants to be a veterinarian some day. Monday, the 6-year-old got a behind the scenes look, as she and her family had an exclusive visit to the Willard Munger hospital at the Lake Superior Zoo. Vet tech Amy Gallagher showed her the surgical room, the X-ray area, and the treatment equipment.


Lillian, who is from Sauk Rapids, was diagnosed with leukemia in January. She pushed through with tests and treatments, and still graduated kindergarten. 

Her parents, Alyssa and Nate, love Duluth. And the Wishes & More group, which is based in Minnesota, gave them a wish-trip to the Zenith City! The adults have been here before, but it's a first for Lillian and her sister, Zella.

"It's been so great. Duluth has been so amazing," shared Alyssa. "We went to the Children's Museum, had pizza on a train, we're staying at the Edge Water Park, Duluth has been awesome."

The zoo was happy to help with the special tour. "It's really nice to see a family who's gone through hardship come here, take a break, relax, and have fun," shared Haley Hedstrom, director of marketing and development at the zoo.

Tuesday, Lillian will be visiting the Great Lakes Aquarium where she'll get a behind-the-scenes skunk encounter.

Wishes & More grants wishes to children with life-threatening conditions, and provides wish recipients a $2000 Scholarship of Hope.

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