Teen’s wish granted as he fills prime minister’s shoes
A teen from Brampton is getting the prime ministerial treatment in Ottawa this week as his wish to fill the shoes of Canada’s top politician comes true.
PJ (Prabjote) Lakhanpal arrived in the nation’s capital with his family on Monday night and was welcomed like a true world leader to the presidential suite at the Chateau Laurier hotel near Parliament Hill. It was the first of several special treats in store for him as part of an itinerary designed by Make-A-Wish Canada.
Lakhanpal, who has been diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma, asked specifically to experience life as Canada’s leader. He even poked a bit of fun at the current PM with a series of poses on photo-sharing app Instagram that mimic Justin Trudeau’s recent spread in Vogue magazine.
Lakhanpal took to his personal Facebook page on Monday night to express his excitement for the trip, joking that “this wish makes me Canada’s first Indian/coloured prime minister!”
The five-day visit to Ottawa really got going on Tuesday as the RCMP and Prime Minister’s Protection Detail arranged tours of their various facilities and a visit to the Musical Ride Branch and stables. Lakhanpal was also given a special security briefing, took a seat on a Challenger jet, and posed with some of the protective detail officers who normally guard the prime minister and his family.
On Wednesday, he is expected to spend the day on Parliament Hill and visit the Peace Tower, observe a Senate meeting, hold a news conference and attend a special dinner. There are reports that he’ll even have a chance to chat with Trudeau at some point.
On Thursday, it will be off to the Supreme Court, where Lakhanpal is set to shadow Justice Russell Brown.
“Much of PJ’s itinerary will be kept secret from him and although he has a general idea of what he’ll be doing, Make-A-Wish has planned a lot of unexpected surprises,” said a release from the organization issued on Monday. “We love surprises.”
Make-A-Wish Canada grants wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions. Its parent organization, Make-A-Wish International, has chapters all over the world, including one in San Francisco that organized an elaborate day of crime-fighting activity for a five-year-old boy who wanted to don Batman‘s cape and mask. Another child in Australia was granted his wish to become “Iron Boy.”
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