Military Grants Midlands Boy His Wish

10:46 PM, Dec 4, 2013   |    comments
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Richland County, SC (WLTX) - The holidays are a time for friends and family to come together and today members of the military rallied around one Midlands boy to grant his wish to become a soldier.

"Richard Culliver is a 7 year old boy that dreams of being a soldier and he is faced with life's challenges but he is still not undaunted in his desire to be a soldier," said Major General Less Eisner.

Last year Richard was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. Recently the tumor shrunk and he is now starting to regain his motor skills.

His mother Stephanie says, for Richard, talking to a solider is talking to a real life super hero.

"I've seen him say so many times when he sees soldiers or police officers to tell them thank you for serving our world and protecting our world," said Stephanie McMillan, Richards mother.

This week the men and women in uniform that Richard looks up to were able to grant one of his wishes; becoming a soldier.

"This has been a very special day and there are no words to describe what it does for us to see him enjoy his self this way."

First, Richard was given his orders at Ft. Jackson as a drill sergeant and then headed to McEntire Joint National Guard Base.

He was given army fatigues and hopped in different military aircrafts as well as fly in a combat simulator.

"There are just no words that you can put around the way you feel when you see somebody do something amazing for somebody else and put that person first and to see my son be on the receiving end of that is overwhelming with emotion almost."

If hanging out in military aircraft and getting your own personalized uniform wasn't enough, the troops at McEntire had more surprises up their sleeves.

He got his own aviator wings, a flight jacket and a flag that was flown on the last mission in Iraq. His mother says this is something he will never forget.

"I know he is going to go home and give me orders, I can already feel it coming since he got to be a drill sergeant today. This day was amazing to him. Seeing him crawl through the mud with the drill sergeants, it's all been amazing."

His mother says that Richard is improving with his physical and speech therapy. 

He will graduate from Ft. Jackson Thursday.




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