Dying Wish Letter Is a Fraud

1-31-06 - A letter designed to touch the hearts of local businesses has turned out to be a fraud. The forwarded letter asks for business cards as a boy's dying wish - but the story has been circulated for a decade.

The letter told of a 7-year-old named Craig Sheppard facing a terminal brain tumor. He wanted to make it into the Guinness Book of World Records for collecting business cards. All they have to do is send a card to his address and pass the message on to 20 other businesses.

It's such a problem for the Make a Wish Foundation; the letter sits on their Web site as a warning. Part of the story is based in fact. The boy's name is real. Back in 1990, his wish was fulfilled through a different organization.

Over the past decade thousands of other businesses have also taken it seriously. The real boy actually beat his disease but now has to forward the business cards to a recycling center.

The Make a Wish Foundation also wants to remind folks they do not solicit help over the Internet or through the mail.