ST. LOUIS — TikTok star Charlie Rocket has more than 7 million followers on his platforms. He spends his time driving around the U.S. with his team in the Dream Machine RV, helping people across the country.
The story of Lyla, a 10-year-old St. Louis girl suffering from a rare disease, caught his eye. He and his team drove to meet Lyla and make her dreams come true.
“We were in Colorado Springs making a dream come true for this homeless man with a food truck, and we heard about Lyla’s dream, and immediately we fell in love. And we were like this girl deserves to have her dream come true,” said Rocket, who is the founder of the Dream Machine.
They weren’t the only ones who fell in love with Lyla. In just two days, more than 15.5 million people have watched Lyla’s story on Rocket’s social media platforms and have also fallen in love with her.
“I have complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) in my leg, and it always hurts — but sometimes it’ll get really bad,” Lyla said.
CRPS can’t be cured, but it can be treated. Still, Lyla is in constant pain.
“There’s actually ‘the worst pain a human can feel’ chart, and CRPS is one of the top ones,” she said. “It’s more pain than getting something amputated and childbirth.”
Rocket and his dream team drove their RV to meet Lyla at the park, but she didn’t know what was happening.
“My mom told me we were going to take pictures at the park and then Charlie surprised me,” she said.
In Rocket’s TikTok video, he asked Lyla what her dream was. She said, “I like to cook, I made cookies today because we’re doing a fundraiser at my house for my leg.”
Lyla, Rocket, and his team spent the day baking pumpkin cookies, decorated to look like a pig.
“We asked her what she was passionate about,” Rocket said. “She said baking. She said pigs. She always wanted a pet pig.”
Lyla’s life changed this week. Rocket’s shared Lyla’s first surprise on TikTok.
“This is going to be your bakery for 24 hours on Sunday, and we’re going to invite the entire city to come to buy your cookies.”
“I never thought this would happen until I was older,” Lyla said.
Lia Holter owns Made. By Lia, in Florissant. She previously won TLC’s Next Great Baker. She got a call from Rocket on Sunday and knew she wanted to help be a part of making Lyla’s dreams come true.
“As soon as I met Lyla, my heart just melted,” Holter said. “I’m like, I was a kid and my dream was to be a baker, own a bakery. Now, I cant wait to help make her dreams come true.”
On Thursday, Lyla met Rocket after school at the bakery. She, Lia, and Rocket decorated cookies that they plan to sell on Sunday during “Lyla’s Dream Bakery.” The event will run from 1:00-4:00 p.m. at Made. By Lia, located at 610 Rue St Francois, Florissant, MO 63031.
The goal is to raise $100,000 on Sunday for Lyla’s treatments, which will help ease her pain. Lyla knows St. Louis will show up at her bakery Sunday, so she already has a plan for any extra money.
“She said if we raise more money than my treatment needs, I want to help other kids with CRPS,” Rocket said.