Thousands turn out for the "Run and Walk for Wishes"

MILWAUKEE -- Thousands crowded the lakefront walking to make the wish of a child come true.  It was the 25th annual Make-A-Wish "Run and Walk for Wishes."  The event raises enough money to grant the wishes for more than 40 kids.

"It means a lot of kids in need are loved and are being helped out here," Make-A-Wish recipient Jordan Patterson said.

Patterson has been winning his fight against kidney disease.  This spring, he got to meet his idol, Kobe Bryant.

"He was really tall and he was really happy because he made the final shot," Patterson said.

Patterson's mom, Dana World-Patterson said the walk is symbolic of so much.

"It is symbolic of hope and joy and courage for the children that are just standing by, really believing that all is going to be well," Patterson said.

More than 3,000 people joined together as teams.  Some represented kids currently battling a disease, others walked in memory of loved ones lost.

Susie Gidan walked in memory of her son Michael.  He lost his battle with a rare disease 13 years ago.

"His sister and I have continued his team in his memory because we know the hope the strength and the joy it gives every wish child," Gidan said.

FOX6's Vince Condella served as honorary chair of the event.  He has been participating since its inception 25 years ago.

"When they approached me 25 years ago to be a part of this event...I was all over it because this is such a special organization," Condella said.

There are four other walks in Wisconsin this year.  The money raised will be enough to grant the wishes for more than 300 kids.

CLICK HERE for more information on the Make-A-Wish Walk and Run for Wishes.