bruder family in disney wrold and cameron bruder on 6ABC news

Local Companies Surprise Struggling Family With Free Disney Trip

Even though the Disney magic seems to be in short supply sometimes these days, there are still plenty of heartwarming moments or experiences to found for people in dire need of some magical surprises — and one family in need has just been treated to some of that magic at a particularly important time!

The Bruder family has been struggling in Cherry Hill, New Jersey ever since the two-year-old boy in the family, Cameron, was diagnosed with leukemia seven months ago. The family was featured in a segment on a local news network, and revealed that the diagnosis came as a huge shock.

In an effort to lessen the blow and help the Bruders regroup together on a fun trip, they were treated to a surprise Disney World vacation last month! Cameron seemed particularly happy to meet Toy Story characters like the cowboy called Woody and the astronaut named Buzz.

Cameron’s trip is also reportedly “the inspiration behind Pretzel Wishes, a larger effort now launched to help more families like the Bruders.” The “pretzel” portion of the name is a reference to one of the two companies responsible for the Bruders’ Disney World vacation: Philly Pretzel Factory.

The Philly Pretzel Factory is owned by Bob Tilton, who apparently “teamed up with the Grouser family from G&G Landscaping in Columbus to send the Bruders to Disney.” The Childhood Leukemia Foundation also got involved when it came to paying for the family’s food at Disney World and their flights to Florida.

“We’re always looking for what can we do next that will definitely help people,” Bob Tilton declared in the interview. Tilton and the Grousers actually planned the Bruders’ trip on extremely short notice, since Cameron Bruder was actually about to start a clinical trial.

“He’s out of chemo options. They told us we can keep trying chemos, but most likely none of them will work, based on his pattern. We had about a two-week break there where they could do a chemo that will keep him bridged until his upcoming clinical trial, which is a T-cell trial,” Cameron’s father, Chris Bruder, explained.

bruder family at disney world

The Bruder family at Walt Disney World Resort. Credit:

“It was nice to go away, not think about going to the clinic every day, and what’s going on. It was just nice to go on vacation with our family and enjoy somewhere else,” Cameron’s mother, Christina Bruder, added.

“We had to go to clinic twice during that period, but other than that we didn’t worry about his numbers. We didn’t worry about where he’s at. We didn’t really worry about anything. It was just great,” said Chris.

Cameron himself sent a thank-you in the benefactors’ directions and confirmed that he “had fun.”

About Sharon

Sharon is a writer and animal lover from New England. Sharon's two main focuses in her work are Disney's correlations with pop culture and the significance of Disney princesses (which was the basis for her college thesis). When she's not writing about Disney, Sharon spends her time singing, dancing, and cavorting with woodland creatures!