They’re sore, they’re tired but they’re happy. Close to 40 players turned out Saturday for the 24-hour charity hockey game in support of Children Cancer Foundation at the Penhold Multiplex, with an unofficial count of $3,230 raised.
“I think for the first year it went really well,” said Trevor Jenner, coordinator of the event.
He said 40 people showed up throughout the day to lace up their skates and play hockey, with the majority, staying for the entire day.
“How could you not be motivated to come out?” said Rachel Raynolds of what got her to the arena 10 a.m. Saturday for the 24-hour haul.
“I think for all those kids out there this is way to let them know there’s people that care — they’re not alone,” agreed John Lawson.
For Stephen Radu, 18, who found out in 2006 he had a brain tumour, the event was exactly what’s needed.
“This is a great thing for a great cause. When I was diagnosed I saw the benefits of it (Children’s Cancer Foundation) and it’s great to give back.” Radu was at the complex Saturday afternoon and made a presentation to the players, encouraging them in their event. Radu’s tumour was located at the stem and only two thirds could be operated on. After surgery he lost his motor skills and was basically flat on his back for four months, explained his father Richard. Then, just before starting radiation, he spoke.
“It’s been a long road back,” said his father of Radu’s 204 days in hospital, six weeks of radiation and five weeks of chemo. In November, he’ll be officially a survivor.
Radu spoke to the group about Camp Kindle, located just outside Water Valley, owned by the Kids Cancer Care Foundation, and about his experiences there.
“It allows kids to just be kids,” he explained. After his presentation, Radu dropped the puck on the ice and the afternoon game continued.
Jenner said the event will become annual, and hopes next year more people can come out and more money can be raised.
“I think for the first year it’s gone really well,” said Landen Ames who was playing over the weekend. “Trevor’s been wanting to do this for a few years. He went to a couple of places in Red Deer but people wouldn’t give him a chance because he was young and they didn’t think he would take it seriously. But then we came to Penhold and they jumped at the idea,” he explained.
Jenner agrees. “For the first year we were figuring everything out and how to get everything going. I think next year we’ll be able to work on making it bigger.”