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Cape Breton Eagles and Cape Breton Regional Hospital Foundation celebrate first annual Hockey Fights Cancer, honouring 5-year-old Louis Roberts

Louis Roberts (front left), is embraced by his dad, Louis, as they sit with his mother, Karen, and sister, Isla. Louis is currently battling Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis (LCH), a form of cancer, and will be honoured at the first annual Hockey Fights Cancer.

This Thursday, the Cape Breton Eagles and the Cape Breton Regional Hospital Foundation will partner to celebrate the first annual Hockey Fights Cancer night at the ‘Nest.’

Hockey Fights Cancer, an initiative now seen throughout the NHL and QMJHL, will be featured annually and will take the place of the former fundraiser, “Pink at the Rink.”

“Over the past 15 years, the Cape Breton Eagles community has helped to raise more than $130,000 for breast cancer via the Pink at the Rink initiative,” says Paula MacNeil, CEO, Cape Breton Regional Hospital Foundation. “We are grateful for this past support and hope the community will join us as we move forward with the QMJHL’s Hockey Fights Cancer initiative, raising awareness and funds for all areas of cancer care.”

On Thursday, January 18, the Cape Breton Eagles will host the visiting Chicoutimi Saguenéens at 7:00 p.m. at Centre 200. The club will wear the first ever purple Eagles jerseys, that will be raffled off during the game to raise funds for the Foundation’s Tom McNeil Cancer Patient Care Fund.

The Simon Hotel is proudly sponsoring the initiative, to ensure 100 per cent of raffle proceeds will directly support patients in need. Each month, 60-75 patients of the Cape Breton Cancer Centre rely on the Tom McNeil Cancer Patient Care Fund during their treatments for support with medications, travel costs for specialist appointments, psychosocial support programs such as art therapy, counselling services and support groups, and more.

Louis Roberts, a five-year-old from Bras d’Or currently battling cancer, will be honoured during the game and drop the inaugural Hockey Fights Cancer puck.

When Louis was 22 months old, he was diagnosed with Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis (LCH). At just two-and-a-half-years-old, Louis began his first round of chemotherapy. This past October, after 18 months of being cancer free, Louis and his family found out he had relapsed. He is now having chemotherapy, once again, which will continue for about three years.

“Louis is smart, funny, and independent,” says Karen Roberts, Louis’ mom, and an RN at the Cape Breton Cancer Centre. “He marches to the beat of his own drum. He loves math, learning to spell, writing books and learning about space. He loves to play Minecraft.”

“It’s unbelievable for him to be honoured in this way,” Roberts continues. “It’s great to see the community come together to show support for people who are going through what Louis is going through. My mom was just diagnosed with cancer as well in October and is a new patient at the Cancer Centre. These fundraising programs make a big difference. I’ve seen them in use as a nurse at the Centre, but I’ve also utilized them for my own family. Every little bit helps when you’re going through this journey.”

“As an organization the Eagles are honoured to be able to host this event with The Cape Breton Regional Hospital Foundation,” says Eagles Assistant General Manager and Brand Ambassador Joey Haddad. “We are excited and looking forward to seeing everyone in our community come out and show their support as we raise valuable funds and awareness for a disease that has affected everyone in one way or another.”