Thirty years ago, an Arizona boy with a life-threatening illness dreamed of being a police officer. So two Arizona state troopers decided to make his wish come true. They fitted him with a real uniform, gave him a battery-operated motorcycle and declared him one of their own. Shortly thereafter, 7-year-old Chris Greicius died, but with his wish, the Make-A-Wish Foundation was born.

To celebrate the 30-year anniversary, police and families from across the state will march in the first Walk for Wishes and Police Parade on Saturday in Fairfield.

The parade will raise money for the organization, and there will be special events, and police equipment on display.

The event will also involve former Make-A-Wish participants, such as Pierce Filippelli, 20, a cancer survivor now enrolled at Fordham University.

During a meeting with Cochran at police headquarters last week, Filippelli said his family has been very involved with Make-A-Wish ever since he was granted a wish to meet Steve Jobs, co-founder and chief executive officer of Apple. "My family and I do a lot of work for the Make-A-Wish Foundation," Filippelli said. "I try and stay involved because it is a really good organization."

Filippelli, a lifelong Greenwich resident, was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma in 2004 and underwent numerous rounds of chemotherapy and several major surgeries. His doctor referred his family to the foundation.

Through the foundation, Filippelli and his family were flown to San Francisco for a week, and Filippelli got a tour of Apple and met Jobs. He said having that experience lifted a weight off him and his family, something that any child dealing with a life-threatening injury should have.

"For my family to go through something so harsh with the chemo and watching me with no hair -- it was a nice break that whole week," Filippelli said. "Everybody had smiles."

Saturday's event is being coordinated by the Fairfield Police Department, which will shut down traffic along Jennings Beach and have participants walking with the other agencies in support of Connecticut's Wish Kids. Organizers said each walker is asked to raise a minimum of $25. The event will also feature lunch, face painting, crafts, games and entertainment.

Registration will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday and the walk will begin at 10 a.m.