Friday, April 26, 2013/lk
Courtney Erikson is a softball player. She understands that no one player succeeds without the help and support of their teammates and that every homerun is the result of each player’s contributions towards a unified goal.
Taking what she has learned about sportsmanship, Erikson is calling on the team – meaning her HRVHS JV and varsity teammates and the whole community of Hood River – to help meet an important personal goal.
Erikson has Cystic Fibrosis and she wants to help find a cure.
“I think $500 is a good starting goal,” said Erikson on her plan to fundraise for Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, the organization researching for a cure. “If we go over, that’s great!”
Two fundraisers are planned and Erikson is inviting the community to come out and show support. During the events, teammates and “opponents” from The Dalles will be joining Erikson – wearing specially designed T-Shirts to promote awareness of the disease.
Cystic Fibrosis affects approximately 30,000 children and young adults in the United States and 70,000 people worldwide. There is no cure for CF.
Cystic fibrosis affects the body’s ability to move salt and water in and out of cells. This problem causes the lungs and pancreas to secrete abnormally thick mucus that blocks passageways, causing breathing difficulties, lung infections and other chronic challenges. Treatment has advanced in the past several decades, increasing both the life span and the quality of life for most people affected by CF. With proper management, many people with CF engage in the full range of school and sports activities.
“Courtney is a super positive person,” said JV coach Lindsy Weseman, who is coordinating the event with Erikson. “She travels with us and does all of our stats. The team is excited about helping her in any way possible. People don’t realize how serious this disease is and we are happy to help.”
How to help:
On April 30, during the JV and varsity games at Westside Elementary beginning at 4:30, team members will be taking donations. Erikson asks that anyone wishing to donate, please bring cash, or checks made out to Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and drop them off at the concession stands or with team representatives.
During the ASA team tournament on May 4 & 5, Erikson and the 12U teams will be at it again, asking this time for checks, cash and recyclable cans. The team will take care of the recycling and will forward the refunds back to CFF.
“Come and support a cure for Cystic Fibrosis and watch a good softball game with The Dalles,” said Erikson.
“May is Cystic Fibrosis month and purple is our color for raising awareness. I’d love to see a lot of purple out there during the games,” added Erikson, who will be sporting her own special shirt along with the teams’. Emblazoned on the front: Hope – It’s powerful, It’s Real, It’s all we’ve got. Cure Cystic Fibrosis. And on the back: Team Courtney.
This isn’t the first time Erikson has laid out a goal for herself that is intended to help others.
Over the past few years, Erikson has been operating “Courtney’s Cozy-eez”, a nonprofit project to make and donate cheerful, soft fleece blankets to children hospitalized at Randall Children’s Hospital at Legacy Emanuel in Portland, the hospital where Erikson receives her own care.
In February, she dropped off 227 hand-tied blankets. Children much in need of comfort welcomed them, and staff reported all the blankets had been “adopted” by the end of March.
Anyone wishing to help Erikson with either the team fundraiser or the ongoing blanket project may mail Cystic Fibrosis Foundation check donations (or cash or check donations for blankets) to: Courtney Erikson 5676 Trout Creek Ridge Drive, Parkdale, OR 97041 or email her for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or come out for a game.