MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Vikki Inamagua, 15, is battling a painful metabolic disorder. But that’s only part of the story — she is space aficionado.
She knows Make a Wish is sending her to Space Camp in August, but she didn’t know what March 2 would hold.
Vikki arrived at WCCO at 9 a.m. Wednesday to a crowd of visitors. So what does that feel like?
“Very, very excited and curiosity just killed me!” she said
It started in our greenroom where she got a video surprise from someone who shares her love of space — a retired NASA astronaut who sent her a video message.
“I’ve been thinking about it for my whole life,” Vikki said.
An aeronautics buff, she also knows more about medicine than a 15-year-old should.
“The pain level is very high,” she said. “It’s like labor, times that by ten.”
So live TV didn’t hurt a bit, and she told her story on WCCO Mid-Morning.
Vikki then stepped out of the spotlight and stepped into an apparel design class at the University of Minnesota for another surprise — the class is designing space wear for NASA, and Vikki gave some input.
She walked away with a souvenir, then walked into the Bell Museum. She had a 40-minute Skype session with four different astronauts.
That was followed by a lunch with a former astronaut and current Sun Country pilot, Curt Brown.
“I was surprised about how knowledgeable she is about space,” Brown said after the meal. He told us he believes she already has a good start to her dream aeronautical engineering career.
She polished the day off with a tour of the stars at the Bell Museum planetarium.
At the end of the day, she said the experience was awesome.
“I learned there’s a lot of work, and time is precious up in space,” Vikki said.
Now that she’s all trained, Vikki will be flying to Alabama for space camp. Make-a-Wish Minnesota is sending her there on donated airline miles. Vikki says she encourages everyone to help donate miles to kids like her.
You can help make a wish like Vikki’s come true by donating some of your airline miles from most airlines, including Delta, United, Sun Country, Southwest, American and others. Call our volunteers at 800-542-9226 to give.