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Rams players and strength & conditioning staff help Make-A-Wish® Tri-Counties surprise high school cancer fighter with home gym

The Rams teamed up with Make-A-Wish® Tri-Counties to grant the wish of a local high school student and cancer fighter, Diego Garcia.

Rams running backs Jake Funk and Javian Hawkins, receiver Ben Skowronek, tight end Jacob Harris , Director of Strength and Conditioning Justin Lovett as well as members of his staff surprised Diego and revealed a new home gym to help his journey to recovery. The Rams also provided Diego with a TV, Bluetooth speaker, weight belt, team-branded gear, and a $500 Dicks Sporting Goods gift card.

"I'm very grateful for everything that all of these people have done to take the time to come out here and surprise me with this," said Garcia. "You guys couldn't have made it better. It was perfect. I'm very thankful."

Diego played high school football before being diagnosed with cancer in 2020. Since then, it has been challenging for him to develop and sustain muscle mass after treatments. Due to his current condition and compromised immune system, Diego cannot go to the gym, but he is committed to getting healthy and back in shape with the goal of playing football again.

Rams teamed up with Make-A-Wish® Tri-Counties to grant the wish of a local high school student and cancer fighter, Diego Garcia.

"Being able to see the joy that something like this brings, you develop a deepened understanding of what people go through. You can tell through their emotions how much their family has been through in the last year. It makes you appreciate it even more," said Funk. "We try to give back as much as possible… and give back to people that aspire to be like us because we were once them, trying to get here. I'm happy for Diego. It's his day and we're glad to be a part of it."

Make-A-Wish® Tri-Counties grants wishes of children with life-threatening illnesses to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Each year, over 100 children are diagnosed with a life-threatening illness and desperately need the positive experience that a wish provides.

"The Rams always say yes, they always show up, and because of their support, they've helped us raise over $1.5 million in the last four years to grant wishes just like Diego's," said Pattie Mullins, CEO of Make-A-Wish® Tri-Counties. "Wishes really help children feel strong, encouraged and give them hope for the future as they battle their diseases. A little bit of hope and love from their communities is just super special."

Founded in 1985, Make-A-Wish® Tri-Counties has granted the heartfelt wishes of more than 1,750 local children in Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties along the central coast of California.

​​To learn more about the Rams' community efforts, please visit

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