One sweet boy’s dream come true involved a lot of trash ― and that’s a good thing.
Ethan Dean, who has cystic fibrosis, has always been fascinated with waste management. So on Tuesday, the 6-year-old had the opportunity to live out his dreams of becoming a garbage man for a day and helped pick up trash around Sacramento, California, thanks to the Make-A-Wish foundation.
The boy, who rode in the garbage truck with Waste Management employee Sam Thurman while wearing a special uniform, made several stops on his route including his school, the Sacramento Bee newspaper, and a fire station to pick up trash and recycling. Thousands of people came out to support him along the route, holding signs and cheering him on, Jennifer Stolo, CEO Make-A-Wish Northeastern California and Northern Nevada told the Huffington Post in an email.
The route concluded at the state capitol, where a press conference was held, honoring the boy. The conference featured some big names including Mayor-elect Darrell Steinberg and Chief of Police Sam Somers, as speakers.
The event wasn’t just exciting for Ethan. Thurman also expressed that he was ecstatic to be part of something so special for the boy.
“It’s a dream come true for me really. I think it’s wonderful,” Thurman told KCRA. “Humbled. Absolutely humbled.”
Ethan’s love for waste management stretches back to when he was just a toddler. Stolo explained to HuffPost that when the family lived in a two-story home, the boy used to run upstairs when he heard the garbage truck coming, prepared to get the very best view.
“He has multiple garbage truck toys and watches a YouTube video of trucks for hours,” Stolo said. “He wants to be a garbage man when he grows up!”
With an experience like this, it seems Ethan’s already got a head start in training!