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Friday, November 15, 2019
Connecting Our Communities

Community rallies to support teen diagnosed with leukemia

A number of fundraising efforts have sprung up to help the family of EDSS student Liam Moyer cope with ordeal

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The community is rallying in support of an Elmira family coping with their son’s leukemia diagnosis, raising more than $10,000 in a matter of days.

Liam Moyer, a Grade 11 student at EDSS, was recently diagnosed with B-cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL), a form of cancer that affects white blood cells in the bone marrow. Moyer will be receiving treatment at the Victoria Children’s Hospital in London over the next month.

His friends have come together to form Team Liam T-shirt fundraiser to support the Moyer family, including his brother Ben, his sister Alie, and his parents Rob and Peri, with the added costs of gas, food, and accommodations while Liam is undergoing treatment.

“We knew that Liam was going through a rough time, so we wanted to do what we can to help support him and his family,” said Kyler Austin, an organizer of Team Liam.

The customized T-Shirts sport Team Liam, a unique logo featuring a ribbon and deer antlers, along with the phrase “Hunting for a Cure.” The phrase is a reference to Liam’s passion for hunting. 

Each shirt costs $20, with all proceeds raised going directly to the Moyer family. Alternatively, money can be donated directly to the family without any purchase on via the same online site.

“Liam is a fantastic kid. He is polite, kind, he loves the outdoors,” said Melanie Austin, an EDSS teacher whose son is best friends with Liam. “He’s bright … and even when the boys went to go visit him, he’s remained positive and maintained his sense of humour.”

He is described as an avid outdoorsman, hunter, fisherman and a Woolwich Wildcat hockey player. Team Liam consists of Austin, Tyler Martin, Kolin Weigel, Nate Snyder, Owen Lee, Colton Schmitt, Eric Lee, Brett Strohoff, Connor Waters, Alex Hutton, and Easton Gowing.

Not only has the group promoted the initiative at EDSS, but his story has also resonated throughout the entire community. 

“The community response has been awesome. I don’t think any of us expected for Team Liam to gain the traction it has,” said Martin. “We have raised over $10,000 at this point. 

“Liam is really happy about it. We’ve all been talking to him about it, he’s really excited. We’re really hoping this helps him out.”

Julie and Ryan Weber organized another Team Liam initiative. An Elmira-based business, Alpine Truck Lettering & Signs, created the Team Liam themed car stickers at no cost; they have a similar pattern to the T-shirts. 

Once purchased, they can be picked up at either Rytech Machine and Repair, where Liam works, or by contacting Weber.

The Elmira Sugar Kings home game against the Listowel Cyclones on October 20 will help the cause. All of the money raised from the 50/50 raffle that would typically go to the Sugar Kings, will go to the family.  

“We talked about it as a board … and said how the community comes out to support the Sugar Kings every week. And if the Kings can support the community in any way we can, that’s what we’re here for,” said Scott Wagler, VP for the hockey team.

There will be a table with donated raffle prizes, such as Kitchener Rangers tickets, gift cards, (with the full list yet to be decided) along with T-shirts and stickers, with all of the money raised going to the cause. Wagler added that the booth will be set up on the upper level of the Woolwich Memorial Centre.

Another added bonus is that kids will get into the game for free with a paying adult, rather than the usual $5 cost.

The response hasn’t stopped there, as yet another stream of support will come from the Wang family. For 10 years, Yo Wang has organized a haunted house display at his heritage home on Arthur Street in Elmira. The interactive experience accepts donations for various charities; this year, donations will go towards the Moyer family.

For more information or to purchase a T-shirt, visit the Team Liam Website.

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