"Puck Cancer" fundraising game set for Saturday in honour of late student

Game aims to raise money for Carley’s Angels, Princess Margaret

Jordan Coccimiglio, one of the organizers of the event, has registered two goals and two assists this season.
Jordan Coccimiglio, one of the organizers of the event, has registered two goals and two assists this season.
Photo: 
(Left to right) Meaghan Taylor, Holly Mathias and Jordan Coccimiglio have been working since June to put on the contest.
(Left to right) Meaghan Taylor, Holly Mathias and Jordan Coccimiglio have been working since June to put on the contest.

When Jordan Coccimiglio and the men’s hockey team take the ice against McGill this Saturday, they’ll be doing so in memory of a former Queen’s student.

Carley Allison passed away earlier this year after a lengthy battle with clear cell sarcoma. The second annual men’s hockey charity game this Saturday takes on a more somber tone than the contest last season, which was held in support of her ongoing treatment. Allison sang the national anthem that night.

The Carley’s Angels Foundation created in her memory provides financial support for families with terminally ill children who need assistance paying hospital bills and other expenses. This season, Allison’s anthem from her appearance at a Toronto Maple Leafs game on Hockey Night in Canada will be played in her honour.

Coccimiglio, a third-year forward, and Meaghan Taylor, ArtSci ’16, are the two main student organizers of the second Puck Cancer fundraising game. Coccimiglio and Taylor have been working on the game since June, with proceeds going to the Carleys Angels Foundation and Princess Margaret Hospitals research initiatives.

Although Carley is certainly the focus of the event, the organizers are hoping their reach is as wide as possible.

“We want to make it a community event, attracting anyone thats ever had cancer of all types,” Coccimiglio said. “We dont want it … [to be] about one form of cancer. We want everyone on campus coming together.”

The Gaels come into the game with an 8-3 record while McGill is ranked first in the country at 12-2.

As one of the team’s biggest rivals, Coccimiglio knows first-hand the importance of a victory in the contest. The Redmen knocked Queen’s out in the second round of the playoffs last year while also beating them twice in the regular season. However, Coccimiglio believes the team has improved enough to bring the Gaels closer to defeating their rivals.

“We have a competitive team this year,” he said. “It should be a good game.”

With a goal of raising $10,000, Coccimiglio and Taylor have their work cut out for them. But theyre not in it alone.

“Its been a long process, but everyones been very helpful,” Coccimiglio said. He praised his teammates, mens hockey head coach Brett Gibson and sponsors for their involvement in the process.

As students get into the game for free, the organizers have found creative ways to fundraise through sponsorships, with the hope of drawing students to the game through a number of giveaways and contests.

Corporate sponsors have been in abundance, the most notable being Air Canada, which has offered two free tickets anywhere in Canada to the winner of an in-game paper plane toss. Boston Pizza has also donated a pizza a month for a year to the winner of the raffle.

On top of their offers, Head Coach Gibson sent in Ottawa Senators tickets four rows behind the bench for the Dec. 27 game against Boston Bruins as part of the raffle as well. 

Though Carleys story is known only to a few, the cancer that took her life is familiar to many.

“Cancers touched everyone directly or indirectly,” Taylor said. “Carley has touched thousands of peoples lives through her singing and her positive outlook on life. Its not only a personal game in her memory, but its a personal game for everyone on the ice and in the audience.”

 

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