CORNWALL, Ontario – The Benson Centre was abuzz with excitement this weekend as 12 teams competed in the first annual Elizabeth Denis Dessureault Memorial Hockey Tournament.
A beloved school teacher, Dessureault succumbed to her two-year battle with lung cancer last February. Having spearheaded an awareness campaign at the start of her diagnosis, Dessureault became the face of lung cancer for the duration of her illness.
“She was a fantastic young lady, and her life was taken far too soon,” said tournament organizer, Dave MacDonald. “It just goes to show that lung cancer can impact anyone at any point in time.”
Having played hockey with Dessurealt’s father for over 20 years, MacDonald thought a memorial tournament might be a fitting way to raise funds.
“I ran it by him to see if he and his wife would consider the idea,” said MacDonald. “They were really touched, and chose to put the money towards Lung Cancer Canada.”
MacDonald says that several participants had been directly impacted by lung cancer.
“Everyone knows someone who has been touched by cancer,” said MacDonald. “But it’s wonderful to see everyone coming out in such high spirits to support the charity.”
A silent auction was held throughout the tournament with all proceeds going directly to Lung Cancer Canada, as well as part of the weekend’s registration fees.