SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — An eastern South Dakota man’s foundation has made a sizeable contribution to Make-A-Wish South Dakota & Montana, but he’s no stranger to the organization’s mission. Sue Salter, president and CEO of the chapter, says that an average wish costs $8,500.

“Well, that’s a lot of wishes right there,” Salter said.

$100,000 is certainly that; Thursday afternoon Ty Eschenbaum handed her a check with that sum across its front.

“It only makes sense for us to get that money out to the kids that need it most,” Eschenbaum said.

The money comes from the Ty Eschenbaum Foundation. The 35-year-old Eschenbaum, who lives at Lake Poinsett, was himself granted a wish with the organization when he was a teenager. He was diagnosed with leukemia at age 15.

“I would tell anybody that’s going through difficult things that we all go through is whatever you can do to keep your feet moving forward, and that’s easier said than done,” Eschenbaum said. “But I believe it’s what you need to do.”

Eschenbaum’s girlfriend Autumn, whom he describes as having been “magnetic” with kids, passed away in 2019. An annual wish now honors her.

“Ty and his foundation had committed to adopting a wish a year every year, at least a wish a year, and so we knew that every year we were going to get a gift of five, six, seven thousand dollars, and I had no idea that a hundred thousand dollar gift was coming our way,” Salter said.

“Getting to write a six-figure check to Make-A-Wish today is, it’s a dream come true,” Eschenbaum said.