The Force is Strong with This One: Esperanza’s Story

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away — well, all right, recently in Los Angeles— there lived a Starlight Kid, Esperanza.  She’s a Star Wars fan and a fighter with a big heart just like her favorite character, Chewbacca.  

In honor of May the 4th, a day Star Wars fans have chosen as a nod to "May the Force be with you," we wanted to share how Esperanza's hospital experience was changed because of a Chewbacca-themed Starlight Gown. 

Chewbacca-themed Starlight Gown

Esperanza is a sweet, passionate, and artistic young girl who spent time at UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital battling stage 4 kidney failure. Long hospital stays can be difficult for anyone, let alone a young kid, but one Starlight program left a lasting impression on her.   

Esperanza in the hospital

During her stay, Esperanza sat in the playroom to show off her artistic ability and design a Starlight Gown. She wanted her design to resemble Chewbacca, in honor of the first Starlight Gown she received in the hospital. 

On the side of her design, Esperanza wrote, “There are heroes like in the movies. But we are all heroes. You are strong and mighty.”   

On this special day, May the 4th, we honor our deep connection with the Star Wars family. The Chewbacca-themed Starlight Gown, made possible because of our incredible relationship with Disney and Lucasfilm, was created for moments like this – to deliver happiness during otherwise stressful and scary moments.  

When we asked her why she loved her Chewbacca gown so much, Esperanza said, “I felt like a real Star Wars character. I felt like I was invincible.”  

Help us make more seriously ill kids feel invincible. Just $35 can provide a Starlight Gown to more kids like Esperanza.

May the Fourth be with you!

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