In Portland, August 6 is now known as “Mermaid Day” in solidarity with people living with spinal muscular atrophy, a degenerative muscle disease.

This August, 10-year-old Wren Grabham was surprised when Make-a-Wish Oregon made her wish of having a swim spa come true.  Wren loves swimming like a mermaid and wanted a place to have pool parties with her friends.

Wren has spinal muscular atrophy and has used a wheelchair since she was 3.  However, in the water, Wren can move much more easily and can sometimes even stand up straight.

“I love to swim, I can float around all day,” she said.

Over 150 people came to Wren’s surprise block party and the mayor has officially named the day “Mermaid Day” in honor of Wren and her love of swimming.

As a Midwestern girl, Josie enjoys living in the plains, but would love to travel the globe, already having spent several months abroad during her studies in Austria. After graduating, she spends much of her time reading, writing, walking, running, dancing, and living! Josie would love nothing more than to empower others to be able to do the same.