Date Added: Sept. 10, 2005
Chain letters that give the average person a chance to help a child in need simply by forwarding them always prove popular. But few people consider the possibility that these messages may be hoaxes and the long-term consequences they may have.
Hi my name is Kayla Wightman. I am 15 years old, and i have a severe lung cancer from second hand smoke. I also have a large tumor in my brain, from repeated beatings. Doctors say I will die soon if this isn't fixed, and my family can't pay the bills. The Make A Wish Foundation, has agreed to donate 7 cents evertime this message is sent on. For those of you who send this along, I thank you so much, but for those who don't send it, what goes around comes around. Have a heart, please. If you don't send this to everyone on your list you have a cold heart (Kayla Wightman) please copy not forward this e-mail to avoid these >>>>>>>
Since at least 1997, the Make A Wish Foundatioin has been plagued by this chain letter. The name and age of the child in trouble has varied, but the 'details' are always the same. Compare the version above to nearly identical chains about LaNisha Jackson, Tamara Martin, Rhyan Desquetado and the original, Amy Bruce.
What this chain suggests - that fowarding it will help a child's family pay for medical care - is technologically impossible. There is no special encoding nor is anyone receiving copies of the fowards and tallying them.
The Make A Wish Foundation is a charitable organization that grants wished for terminally ill children. Wishes range from meeting a favorite celebrity, visiting a theme park, going horseback riding and more. The Foundation does not directly fund children's hospital care, nor would they make such assistance contingent on how many people forward an e-mail chain letter. They've had to divert valuable resources from their mission to answer questions about this hoax. They have a statement about it on their web site:
This Internet-based chain letter claims that a 7-year-old girl named Amy Bruce, who is suffering from a brain tumor and lung cancer, will receive 7 cents from the Make-A-Wish Foundation each time her letter is forwarded via e-mail.
This request is false, and the Foundation has contacted the originatorís Internet service provider to pursue the matter.
Variations of this letter featuring the names Jeff DeLeon, Rhyan Desquetado, LaNisha Jackson, Nikisha Johnson, Jessie Anderson, and Kayla Wightman have also been circulating and are not legitimate.
Most people feel that forwarding a chain letter is harmless, even if it's a hoax. But this one hurts the Make A Wish Foundation, and the children and families they serve. Please, break this chain.