Dying Teen Meets Lifelong Idol GENE SIMMONS

Pablo Fernandez of the Calgary Sun reports:

It wasn't Detroit Rock City, but a trip to L.A. to meet his music idol was the next best thing for a Red Deer teen. Fighting a deadly disease, Vaughn Tayler's dream of meeting his idol Gene Simmons came true, thanks to a foundation that grants kids wishes that are otherwise out of reach.

The 14-year-old was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis at birth.

He started suffering seizures 11 years ago, became a huge fan of the band KISS seven years later, and had one mighty wish come true last month when the Children's Wish Foundation of Canada flew Vaughn and his family to L.A. to meet the legendary band's bass player.

"When he came into the restaurant, I recognized him right away, so I ran up to him and shook his hand," said Vaughn.

"He was like a normal guy, but fabulous ... I wish I could've stayed down there."

Vaughn, along with his mother Yvette, his half-sister and stepfather, flew to L.A. on Dec. 13, for a one-week trip that included lunch with Simmons and an afternoon with the rock star.

Vaughn also had a chance to visit Universal Studios, Venice Beach and was given a tour of McGhee Productions, which has recorded names such as KISS, BON JOVI and AEROSMITH.

Yvette said Vaughn has devoted a large portion of his life to KISS and has read everything he can find about the band, and Simmons in particular. He even gets into full KISS regalia for Halloween, said Yvette.

And because Vaughn's second love is basketball, the foundation also made it possible for the teen to attend an L.A. Lakers game.

Vaughn's bout with cystic fibrosis means he needs daily medical care and must consume an immense amount of pills. His struggle has left him with severe stomach aches, impaired hearing and brain damage. Those stricken with the genetic disease rarely live to be 32.

(Thanks: Travis / www.TRIBEOFBUDA.com)


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