This is what being part of a team is all about

Robin
Robin Short
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.

BASKETBALL Grade 7 hoopsters at Macdonald Drive wear their hearts on their jerseys in support of sick teammate

Since 12-year-old Michael Smith was diagnosed with cancer a month ago, he's not only received support from family and friends but from an entire basketball community.

Michael is a member of the Macdonald Drive Grade 7 boys' team, a close-knit unit which has accompanied their ill teammate every step of the day.

Michael Smith. - Photo by Keith Gosse/The Telegram

Since 12-year-old Michael Smith was diagnosed with cancer a month ago, he's not only received support from family and friends but from an entire basketball community.

Michael is a member of the Macdonald Drive Grade 7 boys' team, a close-knit unit which has accompanied their ill teammate every step of the day.

For the past couple of months, the St. John's native had been complaining of fatigue, and hadn't been sleeping well. Last month, a small lump was found on his neck. Shortly afterwards, Michael was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma.

"Some of the boys knew," said the team's coach, Kevin O'Leary, "because a lot of them are friends. And a lot of the parents know each other.

"Still, it was a shock to the boys to hear it. I know my young fella (Liam) found it hard."

As a sign of support for his friend, Liam had his head shaved. Others are expected to get a buzz cut when the fourth annual Real Time Cancer's Shave for the Brave is scheduled.

"It's not only our team," said O'Leary. "A number of other teams have shown gestures of support.

"Last weekend, we held a tournament at our school. We were playing St. Peter's (of Mount Pearl) in the final and at halftime. the St. Peter's team presented Michael with a big card and gifts.

"And there have been other teams, like Mount Pearl Intermediate and Beaconsfield, who have given him gifts as a sign of support."

A couple of weeks ago, a parent of one of the Macdonald Drive players, Darlene Mullowney, came up with the idea of designing a patch which the players could wear on their jerseys. The patch is adorned with the Canadian Cancer Society's daffodil, Michael's No. 14 and the words, 'Team up to support Michael.'

"We collected $5 from each player to play for the crests, and when we went to pick them up, Ultragraphics gave them to us for nothing," he said.

"It's another example of the support Michael's been getting. If there's one positive thing to come out of this it's the support he's receiving has been overwhelming."

rshort@thetelegram.com

Organizations: Macdonald Drive Grade 7, Canadian Cancer Society

Geographic location: St. John's, Mount Pearl

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page

Comments

Comments

Recent comments

  • Danica
    July 02, 2010 - 13:30

    I have been thinking of Micheal everyday, and it warms my heart knowing all the support he has been getting from his friends and Team, and everyone else around him. xoxoxo We love you Micheal!

  • Wayne
    July 02, 2010 - 13:11

    We have been following Michaels` progress daily for nearly a month now through his fathers` daily blogs. One can only watch in awe and wonder as this brave young man tackles this insidious disease head on , and with such amazing aplomb. He is an inspiration to each and everyone of us.We continue to pray for Michaels` complete recovery and of course to his earlyreturn to his normal job........that of being a teenager.

  • Danica
    July 01, 2010 - 20:19

    I have been thinking of Micheal everyday, and it warms my heart knowing all the support he has been getting from his friends and Team, and everyone else around him. xoxoxo We love you Micheal!

  • Wayne
    July 01, 2010 - 19:48

    We have been following Michaels` progress daily for nearly a month now through his fathers` daily blogs. One can only watch in awe and wonder as this brave young man tackles this insidious disease head on , and with such amazing aplomb. He is an inspiration to each and everyone of us.We continue to pray for Michaels` complete recovery and of course to his earlyreturn to his normal job........that of being a teenager.