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Wish upon a hockey star

Seven-year-old Markus receives his dream wish; skating alongside the Edmonton Oilers.

by Kelli Gustafson / OilersFoundation.ca

Video: COMMUNITY | Make-A-Wish Markus

As the Oilers took to the ice for practice on Thursday morning, they were greeted by a special guest on their bench.

Fist-bumping each player as they stepped out onto the ice, seven-year-old Markus Auger was finally getting to experience a wish he had long been dreaming of. 

PHOTO GALLERY

"When he was one he was diagnosed with cancer," said Markus' mom, Tamara Auger.

His father John added, "After what we went through as a young family, to see him enjoy himself [here]- I just want to cry, I'm so excited!"

Thanks in large part to the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Northern Alberta and Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation (EOCF), Markus' wish to skate with the Edmonton Oilers had finally been granted.

"He loves to skate and he likes to play hockey," said John Auger. "He always talks about McDavid and wants to be like him one day."

"For him it's really a wish-come-true," added Communications Coordinator at Make-A-Wish Foundation Northern Alberta, Sophia Birchall.

After sitting on the players' bench watching his favourite team run drills, Oilers Head Coach Todd McLellan ended practice by inviting Markus out onto the ice.

Tapping their sticks to welcome him, Markus wasted no time, as he quickly grabbed a free puck and skated towards the net with one mission - to score.

And that he did.

Huddling around him to celebrate his first goal scored on Cam Talbot, the Oilers players then broke-off into groups, each taking time to show the small but feisty boy some new moves.

"You didn't like passing too much to me," Connor McDavid joked with Markus while resting in the dressing room after the pair got off the ice.

As McDavid signed his customized orange Oilers jersey, - donning the Auger name - Markus was all smiles.

"It was fun!" Markus beamed. "My favourite part was skating."

But Markus isn't the only one who won't be forgetting this day.

"Having kids of my own now, it really hits home," said Talbot. "Anytime you can provide a day like this for someone like Markus, it's pretty special. We loved having him around and you could tell he was having a blast out there, and we were too!" 

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