2019-02-09 / Sports

Rylee Seabrook Is Granted Packers Game Wish


Rylee Seabrook of Rudyard grins with his favorite Green Bay Packers player quarterback Aaron Rodgers before the December 1 game against the Arizona Cardinals. (Photograph courtesy of Dale Peterson) Rylee Seabrook of Rudyard grins with his favorite Green Bay Packers player quarterback Aaron Rodgers before the December 1 game against the Arizona Cardinals. (Photograph courtesy of Dale Peterson) By Stephanie Fortino

Rudyard ninth grader Rylee Seabrook is a lifelong Green Bay Packers fan, and cheering on the team is a family tradition. His dream to meet his favorite player, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, came true in early December.

Traveling with him to Wisconsin to meet the professional football team were his mother, Laura Jeffreys of Rudyard and grandparents Dale and Diana Peterson of Hessel and Mackinac Island. Rylee’s love of the Packers stems from his grandfather, Mrs. Jeffreys said, as Mr. Peterson grew up near Baraga in the western Upper Peninsula. When Mr. Peterson met his wife, Diana, she shared in his love of the Packers.

The family spent four days in Green Bay from Friday, November 30, to Monday, December 3. The weekend was filled with Packers-related events. Saturday, December 1, Rylee had the chance to meet Mr. Rodgers, his favorite player. They had lunch with Mr. Rodgers and other notable players linebacker Clay Matthews and wide receiver Randall Cobb. They also received a tour of Lambeau Field and met the entire Packers team during the trip.

Sunday, December 2, they attended the Green Bay Packers game against the Arizona Cardinals. Before the game, Rylee and his family got to watch the team warm up from the sidelines of the field. Rylee even got to take a photograph with Mr. Rodgers dressed in his uniform before the game.

The trip was sponsored by the Make A Wish program, which grants wishes to children with medical conditions. Rylee has a team of doctors who help with his illnesses, Mrs. Jeffreys told The St. Ignace News, which include rheumatoid juvenile arthritis, ulcerative colitis, and liver diseases. She explained that Rylee’s liver doctor signed him up for Make A Wish, saying, “They contacted me and made it all happen.”

Despite his ailments, Rylee has an upbeat spirit and always finds the positive in any situation, his mother said. When heading downstate for one of him many appointments or surgeries, Rylee focuses on the positives by looking forward to eating at a favorite restaurant, but even so, the trip is stressful for his parents.

“He’s definitely what keeps me going,” Mrs. Jeffreys said of her son. “He’s so happy and positive.”

Rylee was ecstatic to meet his favorite football team and players, she said.

“It was an amazing feeling,” she recalled. “Personally, I’m not even into sports, but just to see how excited [Rylee] was, obviously that was fantastic. At the same time, it was a little sad. I would tear up because of why we were there, but it was definitely awesome.”

Getting to share the experience with her parents made the trip even more special for Mrs. Jeffreys, as Mr. and Mrs. Peterson have been a big part of Rylee’s life and his ongoing medical treatments.

“The day was about Rylee,” she said, “but to get to share it with my parents – obviously our lives haven’t been easy, but to be able to do that with them just made it that much better.”

Mrs. Jeffreys lives in Rudyard with Rylee and her husband, Christopher Jeffreys II. Mr. and Mrs. Peterson live and work on Mackinac Island during the summers and live in Hessel during the winters.

Return to top

Click here for digital edition
2019-02-09 digital edition