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How serendipity brought piglet, 6-year-old together in Wisconsin to heal each other's hearts

Posted at 2:18 PM, Sep 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-21 16:18:59-04

DANE COUNTY, Wisc. — A Whitefish Bay boy who underwent heart surgery, and a piglet that jumped out of a moving truck. These two completely different events would serendipitously come together to inspire our community, which is why it is Positively Milwaukee.

It has been a long journey for six-year-old Tristan Zick and “Maxwell the Pig.” They met for the first time at Heartland Farm Sanctuary, just outside Madison.

To say Tristan is a fan of pigs would be an understatement.

“Pigs are my favorite animal," Tristan squealed. "I love piggies!”

Maxwell made it to the sanctuary after leaping out of a truck to his freedom. He is now all healed from his wounds.

This is something Tristan can relate to. He had heart surgery nine months ago, and so did his stuffed pig.

His mom Stacy adds, “What was wonderful was that he was able to take care of the little pig, and I think that alleviated his pain because he was looking after his little stuffed pig. It was so cute!”

When Tristan’s birthday rolled around this year, they came across Maxwell’s story. In lieu of gifts, the family raised money to help the piggy recover. The family even hosted a drive-thru bake sale, where the family baked pig-shaped cookies.

Stacy shares what blew her away most of all, “[The sanctuary worker] asked what Tristan’s birthday was, and I told him. They said that was the same day Maxwell jumped out of his truck!”

After the journey they have both been on, it already seems like they are bonded for life.

Click here to learn more about the Heartland Sanctuary in Verona, Wisconsin.

This story was first reported by Julia Fello at TMJ4 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.