8-year-old boy struggling with cystic fibrosis gets special day at zoo

MIAMI -- Zoo Miami granted the wish of an 8-year-old boy fascinated with reptiles and struggling with life-threatening cystic fibrosis, CBS Miami reports. 

The zoo teamed up with the Make-A-Wish Foundation to help Ryland Gallagher from Colorado Springs get his wish to meet alligators and crocodiles.

Friday morning, Zoo Miami's Ron Magill treated Ryland to a private tour where he got to hold alligators, crocodiles, lizards and even a 12-foot python.

He was also able to meet a 525-pound Galápagos Giant Tortoise and a koala, as well as feed giraffes and rhinos.

Ryland has always been fascinated with reptiles and wanted his wish to involve something he'd never be able to do on his own.

And it doesn't stop there, Ryland's wish which lasts until January 9th will include a private tour of Everglades National Park and a fishing trip in Key Largo.

The wish is also a dream come true for his family of five who is also getting a break from the hardship of living with cystic fibrosis.

© 2018 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.


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