The Iowa Boy With Leukemia Got to Ride in a Ferrari Race Car

Illustration for article titled The Iowa Boy With Leukemia Got to Ride in a Ferrari Race Car
Photo: Ferrari-Maserati of Fort Lauderdale (Twitter)

When we last checked in with Caleb Hammond, the 11-year-old boy living in Iowa who is facing his final battle with leukemia, he wanted racing stickers to decorate his casket with. Word spread like wildfire, and soon a Ferrari dealership in Florida took notice. It went a step further and sent an entire race car up to Iowa so that Hammond could have a ride in it.


Garrett Hayim, who owns a Ferrari dealership in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, heard about Hammond and decided to help lift the boy’s spirits in his own way, according to KCCI. He sent the Ferrari 488 Challenge race car, driver Jody Coenen and a racing suit from South Florida to the Iowa Speedway, where the car hit 202 mph and then did a few donuts with Hammond in the passenger seat.

In a call with WSVN, Hayim explained that his father is a cancer survivor, so he wanted to help out. He told the outlet:

“Maybe I can pull off shipping the race teams, the whole team, the truck, the trailer, the race cars, the drivers, ship them all to Iowa and see if we could give this guy a day to remember. If he’s at that point, he needs to enjoy every single day because his moments count even more than yours and mine.”

Hammond said that the donuts “felt like a tornado” and that he’s already collected thousands of stickers from well-wishes across the country, per his original request. Now he can also say that he got to go over 200 mph, which was another wish that he had.

You can still send stickers Hammond’s way by mailing them to 314 North J Street, Oskaloosa, IA 52577.

Writer at Jalopnik and consumer of many noodles.



Good job Garrett. I’m glad he put in the extra effort to allow the kid to actually experience the car at speed, just like any kid or any of us would want to, rather than just some trip around the parking lot or easy lap at a speed he could see on the highway home. There is no cosmic justice when a kid gets cancer, but it is good to see people acting to do what they can to give some comfort to those who need it most.