LETHBRIDGE - Rappelling down an 11-story building would be a frightening undertaking for many, but 30 brave individuals inluding B-93.3's Chad and April did just that at Lethbridge Centre Wednesday (Aug. 29), for the Make-a-Wish Foundation's "Rope for Hope" event.
Southern Alberta-Make-A-Wish CEO Kim Anthony said the goal was to raise $40,000 to make four children’s' wishes come true. The average cost of a wish is about $10,000.
"It's a fun event. We work with a good safety company. But there's a lot of work that goes into it. We've had volunteers working on it, and our staff, for months and months. Now it's all come to fruition. We're so lucky with the support we've had from the community."
Tina Zimmer's son Riley was granted a wish in March of 2017. In June 2016, he was diagnosed with Burkitt's Lymphoma, a form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, which is an aggressive cancer associated with impaired immunity. If left untreated, it can be fatal.
"Riley underwent chemotherapy, multiple surgeries and we spent time at the Children's Hospital in Calgary. Riley through his journey was amazing. Riley very seldom complained. He always had a smile on his face. And as a family we always try to remain positive, which I truly believed helped in his healing."
Riley's wish was to practice with the Chicago Blackhawks and Make-A-Wish Foundation made it happen.
"Riley was a goalie. And so, he took part in their practice. And so, everyone was shooting pucks on him and he was part of the drills. And after the ice...it was a game day, so he partook in the lunch, he got to hang out with (Corey) Crawford the goalie which was his favourite goalie."
He also met Centre Johnathan Toews, hung out with the team in their locker room and went to a home game at the United Centre as the team took on the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Zimmer says the family is now involved with the foundation as a way to give back to the organization.
"And hopefully other kids who are going through a medical condition can have the opportunity to have their wishes granted. Because not only does Make-A-Wish help family, most importantly it's the kids. And it has helped Riley in his healing."
And she emphasizes those wishes granted are times when the children can forget about their illnesses and just 'be in the moment.'
The foundation is hoping to make 55 to 60 kids' wishes come true in southern Alberta.
For more information on the Make-A-Wish Foundation, go to http://www.childrenswish.ca/
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