Comox Valley's generosity honours Emily's memory
Friday's fundraiser in honour of Emily Wood raised over $1,300 towards two charities, including one named after her.
The Celebration of Life for Emily and husband Shawn Wood happened at the Mex Pub in Courtenay. The money raised will go to the Emily Ann Foundation and the Canadian Cancer Society.
Wood, née Niinemets, touched the hearts of many in the Comox Valley when she and Shawn Wood reached out to the community to help ensure 24-year-old Emily received her dying wish of a dream wedding to 28-year-old Shawn.
Near the end of June, Emily was given three to 12 months to live after she was told treatments were not working on the aggressive large-cell lymphoma cancer she was diagnosed with early in the year.
The couple were short on cash for a wedding, and the community responded by donating goods, services, and cash to help make Emily's dream come true.
They were married on July 3 and although she was given much longer to live, Emily passed away a short 10 days after the couple's wedding.
Shawn, who is entering the fourth year of his business degree in September, decided to create the Emily Ann Foundation in memory of his wife. He noted he planned to help other people in situations similar to Emily's and specifically, he wanted to help others with dying wishes but who may not qualify for other charities.
"We looked into lots of programs, like Make a Wish and those kind of programs, and there's a lot of paperwork and there's a lot of time it takes for them to start helping and, you know, when those people are in dire straits I just want to be able to go, 'We're here, we got you, let's do it,' you know, make that wish happen whatever it may be," Shawn told the Record when he announced the charity in mid-July. "That's the kind of things I want to help with is when people have no one else to go to. I promised I'd keep fighting for her."
Friday's fundraiser at the Mex featured musicians including Pamela Tessmann, Cottonmouth Jones, Braeden Marshal, the Lorne Rangers and DJ DeToks.
Admission was by donation and there was also a raffle for a gift basket valued at $600 and various other fundraising initiatives throughout the evening.