Residents have rallied around a Kelowna man who has been diagnosed with stage four liver cancer and Hepatitis B.
Fundraising for the family – Sean Lalonde, father of five children and wife, Valerie – has already raised $49,180 to support the family through his health crisis as the couple are on medical leave from work.
After a family vacation in December 2017, Sean went to the hospital because of severe stomach pain. Sean was diagnosed with hepatocellular carcinoma, an advanced non-operable liver cancer.
After he was diagnosed, his wife began a prayer page for him and to update their community as he is a kid’s pastor at the Kelowna Christian Center. Sean is not a candidate for a liver transplant because the cancer has spread to some lymph nodes in his stomach.
An anonymous donor matched the initial $5,000 that was requested in the first three days of fundraising for the family to help with costs not covered by medical insurance like additional holistic therapies, as well as take financial pressure off of the family. The amount needed has now been raised to $70,000 as $50,000 is needed for his last option in treatment.
“We have been so incredibly blessed by all those who have supported us financially at this time. Whether from giving on our GoFundMe page, donating personally or running different fundraisers. It’s a little overwhelming to see and feel the love of so many of you. Both Sean and I have felt how do we repay, how do we thank, what can we do. It is during those thoughts that we have learned we need to receive. We need help and we need to humble ourselves and open our arms and hearts. Thank you!” said Valerie in an update to their prayer page on Nov. 13.
The family is also fundraising to go on a family trip for a treatment in Mexico.
“Some friends of my dads have said they would like to raise money specifically for flights to Mexico. So we booked our tickets today. We leave Dec. 4,” said Lalonde in an update on their page. “This is a huge step out in faith as we do not have all the finances in place. But that is another thing we’ve learned this week. That we are not in this alone. We have all of you and a huge community supporting and fighting along side us so we are certain the finances will come.”
Several fundraisers are planned before their departure:
Nov. 17 at Oranj Fitness in Kelowna from 12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. there will be a clothing sale where 100 per cent of the proceeds will be donated to the Lalonde family.
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YOU’RE INVITED to an EPIC clothing sale where 100% of PROCEEDS go to a local family in need. @seanjlalonde has been diagnosed with stage 4 terminal Liver Cancer. He has exhausted all medical options and now needs to raise $50,000 for his last option in treatment. Him and his beautiful wife @lalondey have 5 beautiful children who don’t want to loose their AMAZING dad. He is fighting for his life and needs our help! By purchasing a bag of clothes from this event (as much as you can fill in a grocery bag!) you will be helping out this family. There will be all sizes at this sale and all styles. We also have some amazingly fashionable local babes donating to this event including @jillian.harris, @stylebykimxo, @grublette.style , @kaylagabelhouse , @carlymal, @katefert, @jennaswetlikoff and many more! PLEASE help spread the word and share this event! #prayforseanlalonde
Nov. 25 BNA will host an afternoon fundraiser from 12:45 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Nov. 28 Spin it forward fundraiser at Spin Co.
Nov. 29 Ladies Paint Night that is sold out
Dec. 7 donations for a yard sale will be taken at 2412 Apollo Road
Dec. 8 from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. there will be a yard sale and bake sale at 2412 Apollo Road
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