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5-year-old boy gets movie-star treatment on his way to preschool graduation

Wisdom Parker was injured in a hit-and-run earlier this month, so community members stepped up to make his preschool graduation extra special.

Wisdom Parker, 5, and his family pose with 100 Men Standing and Robert Money in front of the limousine they were surprised with Friday morning.
Wisdom Parker, 5, with his family, Marvin and Maurice Edwards and Robert Money.
Cheyanne M. Daniels/Sun-Times

Wisdom Parker, left with a broken arm and leg after a hit-and-run earlier this month, made his way to his preschool graduation at Little Sprouts Daycare in the backseat of a limousine Friday.

“It was fun!” Wisdom said, smiling broadly behind his face mask.

His 7-year-old sister, Alana, was in the limo with him and said she “felt like a movie star” the whole ride. Both of them were excited to climb back in at the end of the graduation ceremony.

Chloe Watts, Wisdom’s mother, said the limousine’s arrival at their home Friday morning was a total surprise. “I was really just trying to get him in order” for his ceremony, Watts said.

“We’ve had a lot of help that’s taken a burden off,” Watts said. Donations from community members have poured in for the family in the forms of a wheelchair, new toys and, of course, the surprise limo ride.

The limousine was provided by the Andrew Holmes foundation, 100 Men Standing and the Robert Money Love Movement. All three organizations work to stop the spread of violence in communities through community engagement.

“When we got ahold of his history, we felt compelled to act and step forward, to come out and encourage him to not only continue his education but to look at the seriousness of life,” said Marvin Edwards, who co-founded 100 Men Standing with his twin brother, Maurice. “We very well could have been at his funeral this morning instead of his graduation.”

Wisdom was unable to walk into the graduation because of the big blue cast that stretched from his left foot to his thigh. So Marvin and Maurice Edwards carried Wisdom out of the limo and placed him in a small motorized children’s car.

Wisdom waved at his classmates, teachers and family as he was carried around.

“The smile on his face was just heartwarming,” Maurice Edwards said. “Your heart just goes out to him.”

Wisdom will be in physical therapy for at least another month and will have to rebuild strength in both his arm and his leg, Watts said. Doctors expect him to make a full recovery, she said.

Wisdom said he can’t wait to play and run around outside with his sister when his cast comes off.