Former Make-A-Wish child reflects on meeting Kobe Bryant

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RADFORD, Va. (WDBJ) - The first eight years of Henry Moore's life story can be summed up by two things: a hospital bed and a basketball hoop.

Photo courtesy Moore family

Even at age five, Henry knew how to dunk a ball. By seven years old, he got more comfortable with a camera.

"I don't really think too much of it now, but it's kind of crazy to think that news stations were so invested with my life," said now 20-year-old Henry Moore.

Henry was born without an immune system. To survive, he needed a bone marrow transplant. It took seven years to find Henry a transplant.

"The thought of dying never really crossed my mind. Obviously for everyone else but me, it was a completely different story," said Henry.

It was a story that made him a Make-A-Wish candidate. His wish was to meet NBA player Kobe Bryant.

"It was a no-brainer; he was the best in the game at the time," said Henry.

"You know I'm a college basketball fan, not so much an NBA basketball fan, so this was something Henry found on his own," said Henry's dad, Patrick.

Henry's parents Patrick and Angela were surprised at their son's choice, but knew it was something that he really wanted.

"So I only ever went to that one game but that one game was really, really, really magical," said Henry.

In that one game that Henry got to go to when he was eight, Kobe Bryant scored 52 points against the Mavericks. Henry thought his hero scored those points just for him.

His mom and dad thought they'd be lucky to just get this one picture. Instead they got over an hour with him - one on one - and met Kobe's wife and daughters too.

"I knew he granted Henry's wish and made Henry's wish special; I didn't know he granted over 200 wishes," said Patrick.

Henry has always been special. The syndrome he was born with only affects one in 5 million. To be one in 200 makes his memories of Kobe that much more important.

"I hope he's remembered as a father who loved his kids so much. It was so evident that he did," said Patrick.

It's also evident that even though Henry is sad, he's not going to ever forget.

Kobe Bryant is a legend. A legend that to Henry, will never die.

"Oh he's still going to live on forever," said Henry.

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