Let’s hit the pause button on 2020 and enjoy a feel good story.
I ran an insanely fun, rock radio station – and was on the board of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Those worlds collided when I met Kelley, a 19 year-old brain cancer patient.
I was asked to fulfill Kelley’s dying wish – to meet Paul McCartney.
As it happened, Paul was about to start his American tour. So, I reached out to his people and requested a meet & greet for Kelley in Seattle. After several tries, I was politely told “Sorry, no. Paul hasn’t played in the U.S. since John Lennon’s murder. So, he’s not meeting anyone.”
Perfectly understandable. But I could hear the dejection in Kelly’s voice.
So, I gave it one more shot. I appealed to Paul McCartney, the father of a 19 year-old daughter named Stella. I asked him to imagine if she had months to live, and just wanted to meet her hero.
The next day, Paul agreed. But, there was one caveat: Nobody can know. He wanted a private moment, not a media circus.
On the day of the concert, Kelley, her mom & I were escorted into a green room. Within moments, Sir Paul pulled back the curtain, walked right up to Kelley and gave her a big hug. They sat together for a half-hour, talking and laughing. I glanced over at Kelley’s mom who had tears streaming down her face.
Then, Paul stood up, posed for pictures and said, ‘Oh, we’re not done yet.’ He grabbed Kelley’s hand and seated us in the front row of the empty Kingdome. He jumped onstage and played a few songs, winking at Kelley as he sang. Then, Paul headed for the merchandise table and loaded her up with armloads of swag and VIP concert tickets.
More hugs, more smiles – and in a flash, he was gone. And nobody found out…until now.