Community sends positive thoughts to Parker
|By Mark Arike - Staff Writer | January 26, 2017
Some of Parker Simpson’s biggest supporters came out in droves to A.J. LaRue Arena in Haliburton on Saturday for a family skate and activity day.
The fun festivities raised more than $2,200, which will help the eight-year-old boy’s family during a time of need.
“Feeling useless to the situation, we wanted to do whatever we could to help them,” said Brianne Pockett, who organized the fundraiser with fellow local residents Brandi Hewson, Britney Rock, Marita Bagshaw, and Courtney Wilson.
Parker is battling cancer at SickKids in Toronto while his parents, Sarah Burk and Devin Simpson, and younger sister Kenzie stay at Ronald McDonald House down the street. Sarah left her job to be by his side.
He was diagnosed with a form of Lymphoma a year ago and underwent 10 months of treatment. Although doctors said it was gone, new tumours were discovered shortly thereafter.
Parker isn’t from Haliburton County but his mother is. She attended Haliburton Highlands Secondary School with the five women behind the recent event.
In addition to skating, the event featured a bake sale, face painting, raffles, and food and refreshments.
More than $7,000 has been raised for the family through a GoFundMe page, which was set up by Wilson. Its goal is $20,000.
As for Parker’s condition, his mother said he “continues to fight daily against this brutal disease.”
“We are so proud of him,” said Sarah. “He is stronger than anyone we know.”
He is still taking an experimental drug and will undergo a CT scan this week to see if it is working.
A Valentine’s dinner is scheduled for Feb. 11 at the S.G. Nesbitt Memorial Arena in Minden.
With files from Alex Coop.
MARK ARIKE is a reporter for The Highlander.