'Felix Has Become Our Family': The 4-Year Friendship of Felix Hernandez and Make-A-Wish Kid Sophia

'Felix Has Become Our Family': The 4-Year Friendship of Felix Hernandez and Make-A-Wish Kid Sophia

During the Mariners’ home opener, Sophia, a girl who has battled heart ailments her entire life, will participate in the ceremonial “First Run Around the Bases.” Waiting at home plate to give her a big hug will be Felix Hernandez. Sophia has had two open-heart surgeries and four other heart procedures, all done at Seattle Children’s Hospital because of a scarcity of pediatric heart surgeons in Alaska.

About Seattle Children’s

Seattle Children’s mission is to provide hope, care and cures to help every child live the healthiest and most fulfilling life possible. Together, Seattle Children’s Hospital, Research Institute and Foundation deliver superior patient care, identify new discoveries and treatments through pediatric research, and raise funds to create better futures for patients.

Ranked as one of the top children’s hospitals in the country by U.S. News & World Report, Seattle Children’s serves as the pediatric and adolescent academic medical center for Washington, Alaska, Montana and Idaho – the largest region of any children’s hospital in the country. As one of the nation’s top five pediatric research centers, Seattle Children’s Research Institute is internationally recognized for its work in neurosciences, immunology, cancer, infectious disease, injury prevention and much more. Seattle Children’s Hospital and Research Foundation works with the Seattle Children’s Guild Association, the largest all-volunteer fundraising network for any hospital in the country, to gather community support and raise funds for uncompensated care and research. Join Seattle Children’s bold initiative – It Starts With Yes: The Campaign for Seattle Children’s – to transform children’s health for generations to come.

For more information, visit or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or on our On the Pulse blog.