Thanks to the generosity of Mountain Hot Tub and Make-A-Wish of South Dakota & Montana, a little girl’s dream of her own spa became a reality.
5-year-old Maylee Williamson, of Butte, Montana, suffers from SAVI (STING-associated vasculopathy with onset in infancy) an extremely rare autoimmune disease that affects the lungs, skin, joints, bones, and blood vessels. Interstitial lung disease, which leads to difficulty breathing, is another chronic ailment the little girl has to endure, which is associated with SAVI.
Soaking in spas has been among the few high points of life with the disease, which she gets to do during her many motel stays for out-of-state treatments.
“She loves when the jets are on because they make bubbles,” said Kylah Williamson, her mother.
So, when the owners of Mountain Hot Tub, a swim-spa and hot tub dealer headquartered in Bozeman, Montana, heard about her wish, they were thrilled to participate.
“What a great opportunity to make a girl’s day. It’s a great feeling,” said Kelly King, co-owner.
According to Max Blaser, General Manager of the hot tub dealership, the hot tub they donated to Maylee is state of the art. Because of her medical condition, Maylee’s particular brand includes a chemical-free hydraulic cleaning system.
Maylee’s tub features the Clear Comfort system, which was also donated. The Clear Comfort system works by sanitizing the pool or spa using a process similar to the way that air is naturally cleaned in the atmosphere. An advanced oxidation process (AOP) creates hydroxyl radicals to provide powerful, immediate and enduring sanitation. This enables users to minimize chlorine use. “The reason we went with this particular system is that Maylee has a lung condition that is specifically exacerbated by the inhalation of chlorine/ bromine fumes. The idea is to provide Maylee with as close to a chemical free experience as is possible in the industry today. The specific tub donated was a Hot Spring Spas Prodigy,” Blaser said.
Blaser said that Mountain Hot Tub has worked with Make-A-Wish Montana on numerous projects over the past four or five years, including three hot tub donations, a swim spa donation, and they also do a 'Make-A-Wish March' promotion (a portion of March proceeds goes to Make-A-Wish Montana if no one wishes for a tub during a given year).
Katie Merrill, of Make-A-Wish said that hot tubs aren’t common on children’s wish lists.
She’s thankful to King and all of the employees at Mountain Hot Tub for making it happen.
“This is the best part of my job. Maylee wanted her very own hot tub. Wishes do come true,” Merrill said.
Maylee looked a little confused when she walked into the backyard to numerous people standing around. But then she heard her sister scream “HOT TUB!” and the two girls began jumping up and down with excitement. The top came off minutes later and the girls ran inside to get their swim suits.
“Now she can relax and play with the bubbles,” said Bob Williamson, her grandfather.
Standing nearby, Maylee’s mother had tears in her eyes as she listened to her children’s laughter.
Overcome with gratitude she thanks Make-A-Wish and Mountain Hot Tub.
“This means everything,” she said. “She needed something hopeful and I am incredibly grateful.”
Maylee Williamson, 5, swims with Lakelynn Wilson, 7, and Aiden Williamson, 10, after receiving a hot tub from the generosity of Mountain Hot Tub and Make-A-Wish of South Dakota & Montana.
Photo credit Montana Standard, March 5, 2021, By Tracy Thornton