Hockey Community Rally's Around Family Affected by Epilepsy
The Lakeshore hockey community is supporting a young boy with epilepsy.
Katelynn Thibert's two-year-old son Dekson was diagnosed last September — the neurological disorder causes recurring seizures.
A family friend coordinated a fundraiser between her Belle River team and the Windsor Minor Hockey (AA) squad to kick off Epilepsy Month over the weekend — raising more than $4,200.
Thibert says she wasn't prepared for the news.
"There are over 40 different types of seizures, I had no idea. I didn't know that children get epilepsy, seniors, it's unbiased," she says. "Dekson started falling a lot in the summer and we just thought he was being clumsy running around as a toddler. He was a late walker, so, we brought him to the doctor because one time his eyes rolled back."
The Thibert's will be heading to London in June for overnight testing to determine what type of epilepsy their son suffers from.
Amy Discher organized the fundraiser, which also served as a teaching moment.
"We taught them a bit about epilepsy, we let them know that some things are bigger than hockey. Some things are bigger than winning a trophy and that it's important to be there for people when they need help," says Discher.
For now Thibert and her husband Jeff are staying optimistic and advocating for epilepsy awareness while taking the time to enjoy Dekson and his younger brother Duke.
The neurological disorder affects more than 33,000 people in Ontario alone.