6-year-old boy receives ‘My Happy Place’ room makeover

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(ABC 6 News) – While no one can stop the tragedy of people being diagnosed with terminal illness and chronic diseases, a nonprofit group called “My Happy Place” is making sure everyone has a space they can feel at home in.

On Sunday, a young boy in Ellendale received that special gift.

Six-year-old Rourke Wacholz, was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia when he was 4.

He usually spends a lot of time in his room when he’s not feeling well.

As he’s going through his third round of chemotherapy, his parents wanted to do something special for him.

That’s when they came across My Happy Place.

“We asked them questions about what are Rourke’s favorite things, what are his hobbies, we asked them what would they like to see in Rourke’s room,” said Lisa Tan, executive director of My Happy Place.

The question stumped them for a bit, but after a trip to a furniture store, Rourke had an idea.

“He really liked the bunk beds, but he doesn’t want two beds or doesn’t need two beds, so he just wanted the open space underneath so that’s where the loft bed idea came from, I think,” said Chelsey Wacholz, Rourke’s mother.

My Happy Place quickly went to work to give Rourke’s room the makeover it deserved.

It all led up to the big reveal. Everything in the room was tailored to Rourke’s interests, like dinosaurs.

My Happy Place believes in local donations and $4,000 were raised locally to make Rourke’s dream bedroom a reality.

“We can’t say thank you enough if you donated, we don’t have a list of people or we don’t know who they are but we say thank you,” said Chelsey Wacholz.

Rourke was one of many that got to experience this.

Despite them not being in an area My Happy Place serves, they made the drive to make Rourke’s room a happy place.

“When they open that door for the first time and see their room, the happy tears start rolling and it doesn’t matter how many hurdles you had to go over,” said Tan.

My Happy Place has 10 branches across the country with the Mankato branch being the only one in Minnesota.

They hope to expand in the future.

To view more stories like Rourke’s or if you want to learn more about the organization, click HERE.