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Making an impact on Cancer Care in Niagara

April 26, 2019

In 2014 the Cuthbert Cup was established in memory of Linda Cuthbert who lost her battle to a cancerous brain tumor in 2010.  Created by Michelle Cuthbert, the Cuthbert Cup was a way to help her husband, Linda’s son, Matt cope with his own upcoming cancer surgery, by gathering friends and family to play the game he shared with his mother.
 
Seeing Linda trek back and forth to Hamilton for her own cancer treatments was the main reason they wanted to contribute to the Walker Cancer Centre. Knowing they would be supporting cancer treatment at the new St. Catharines Hospital and its Cancer Centre, in their own community, meant others would not have to endure exhausting travel on top of an already difficult journey.
 
Raising funds for the cancer centre, all while playing hockey, was a meaningful way to honour Linda’s memory. “The Cuthbert Cup is really about community and giving back since these are the lessons taught and embodied by my mom through her life,” Matt commented.
 
Linda, who once played as a young girl, loved the game of hockey as it allowed her the opportunity to connect with Matt outside of the traditional mother-son relationship. Every year they went to an NHL game to celebrate their birthdays and she would not let the diagnosis get in the way of that tradition. Two days before the scheduled birthday game Linda had an emergency cranial biopsy performed to diagnose the tumor. She was left with iodine stained hair and an open hole in her skull, to which she put on a hat and said “are we going or not?” Nothing would stop her from spending quality time with her son, especially in a hockey arena, and it would prove to be the last game they attended together.
 
A tournament designed around family and friends playing together, Cuthbert Cup teams are comprised of grandparents, parents and kids. Moreover, a ceremonial puck drop by a Walker Family Cancer Centre patient drills home why they are all there: supporting cancer care close to home for their loved ones, friends and neighbours.
 
“Many of our players have been patients at the Walker Family Cancer Centre or have a family member who is currently receiving treatment,” explains Michelle. “If our fundraising can help treat and give patients more time with their friends and family, that is amazing.”
 
In 5 years the Cuthbert Cup has raised over $50,000, and counting!  On April 6, 2019, twenty teams gathered at a four pad arena in St. Catharines for the 6th Annual Cuthbert Cup. For each team, supporting the cancer centre is their main priority.
 
“I have been able to play alongside my nephews, dad and even my grandfather, who recently received cancer treatment at the Walker Family Cancer Centre,” says Michelle. “When else would I get the chance to play with them, plus support their care?”
 
Thank you to the Cuthbert Cup family and their annual supporters! You truly are making an impact on cancer care in Niagara.

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Philanthropy is based on voluntary action for the common good.  It is a tradition of giving and sharing that is primary to the quality of life.

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