On Sept. 12, 2013 my life changed. My son, Dominic, was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia.
He underwent numerous rounds of chemotherapy, a bone marrow transplant and pretty much lived at the Alberta Children's Hospital in Calgary.
In December 2014 we got the news that his cancer had relapsed a second time and we were out of options. On Sept. 3, 2015, he died while in Orlando for a wish trip.
Early on our family recognized what a special place ACH is. From the building block-inspired architecture to the incredible team of nurses, doctors and support staff, we knew our one-year-old boy was in the best hands possible.
I soon began blogging about our experience at dominicstrong.com - his journey had so many twists and turns as to be unimaginable.
Thanks to a close friend of mine I was introduced to Extra Life and wound up raising more than $4,000 for the 2013 event. Between my page and the #Dominicstrong team we have now raised more than $100,000 in his name - and we're not going to stop.
I want to continue to give back to the place that has given my son a chance to live. So in 2017, I will participate in the 25-hour Extra Life gaming marathon again.
Please consider supporting my efforts with a tax-deductible donation. Every penny you give here goes to the hospital, which supports not just kids in Calgary but those all over the country.
You never expect to need a children's hospital. I wish nobody did. But when you do, you're so glad it's there. I will be giving thanks for it the rest of my life.
The only contest we are still running online is a draw for a pair of tickets to see the Calgary Flames play the Arizona Coyotes Nov. 30 in Calgary. Donate minimum $10 and mention in notes you want to be put in the draw.
To be clear, all amounts include our other Medicine Hat friends' totals. And yes, the donations here are in US dollars - you need to calculate the exchange rate on your own.
We will be set up for our entire 25-hour marathon at Beveridge Landmark Events' Cellar room Nov. 4 8 a.m. until Nov. 5, 8 a.m. See the event on the #Dominicstrong Facebook page for more info and information on other charity projects we are involved with.
For now, here's the stream schedule - we will be live at twitch.tv/gomerstraw for the entire marathon:
PLAYING IN SUPPORT OF
Donations stay local to fund critical treatments, healthcare services,
pediatric medical equipment and charitable care.