EDWARDSVILLE - Kelan Masinelli celebrated his 10th birthday nearly a year ago in July but this Saturday he revealed his gift the community, the wheelchair accessible swing at the Boundless Park in Edwardsville, Kelan’s Swing.
Kelan received a Make a Wish grant which the family decided to use for a new swing to be installed at the Edwardsville Township Community Park. His parents, Tim and Jamie, said taking their son and daughter to the park was never something they could completely do as a family because of Kelan’s Lissencephaly diagnosis which requires him to use a wheelchair.
Kelan’s mother, Jamie, said the family is thrilled to see the installation of the swing complete.
“This is amazing,” Jamie said. “It happened. It’s almost a year to the day since we decided this what we wanted to do and here we are a year later, it actually happened and we are so grateful. Riley, she is so excited. She said ‘Wow, Kelan and I really get to go to the park together and we’re both going to be able to swing.’”
It wasn’t just Kelan who got to break in the new swing Saturday, the family was happy to see other children get a chance to ride on the swing as well.
“I’m so excited and I’m so excited to two see other kids here,” Jamie said. “That was the whole point, to make this something for the community so that everyone like Kelan can use it. I’m just thrilled that so many people came out to support us and see this happen.”
Kelan’s father, Tim, thanked The Edwardsville Community Foundation and the Junior Service Club for their donations and contribution to the installation of Kelan’s Swing.
“They were really the ones that put us over the top,” Tim said. “We were really close to meeting our goal after we started, they were willing to donate the rest of it. They’re basically responsible for the park here today,” Tim said. “They’re really the driving force behind making this happen. The park has always meant a lot to us and meant a lot to them so it really felt like a marriage for them to be involved in this project to make this, at least in our families eyes a really complete playground.”
Jamie added that they want everyone to share their photos and videos of their families getting to the park and using the new swing.
“We’re going to keep Kelan’s Make a Wish page open,” she said. “We wanted to give people a way to share their pictures and videos because we would love to see other families sharing this. It gives everyone the opportunity to see this in action and see that this has helped not only our son but a lot of other people.”