Hockey may act as a type of paintbrush for some fans. Memorable moments are painted onto the canvas of our memory to be enjoyed and shared for years to come. A history-making goal, an epic scrum, or a lift of the Cup can be glorious mental painting. Sunday afternoon I was blessed with a beautiful image and the artist was my pal, Cameron Williams.
Countless people filled every corner of Christ’s Sanctified Holy Church in Raleigh Sunday afternoon. They were all there to show their love and support for one of hockey’s biggest fans; a fan that lost his battle to Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy on Thursday, October 6, 2011. While voices sang in unison prayer, fifteen-year-old Cameron rested peacefully. His faithful service dog, Star, rested beneath his casket as Jeff Skinner’s All-Star sweater was draped across the top. The black Canes jersey slightly overlapped with Cameron’s yellow Carolina Fury jersey. Cam was a forward for the North Carolina power wheelchair league, and a mighty talented one.
Many special memories were shared about this amazing boy’s life. One of my personal favorites is when Cam scored on Canes’ goalie, Justin Peters. After sneaking the puck past Peters, Cameron lit up with one of his trademark smiles. You couldn’t help but smile when Cam smiled. The grin was contagious, warm, and very loved. A family member later asked Peters if he allowed the goal, and he confessed he was out skilled by the young winger.
Many of the special moments shared by his loved ones were about hockey, and through tear-stained eyes, I glared at that Hurricanes’ jersey in a new way. The red, black and white logo doesn’t just symbolize a sport, it means love. It means family. It means Cameron.
I will be wearing a red ribbon to every Canes game in Cam’s honor. Please leave a comment if you are interested in doing the same and I will send you a ribbon.
Donations are being accepted in Cameron’s name to the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA, 333 E. Six Forks Rd. Suite 105, Raleigh, NC 27609). Checks or money orders will go towards summer camp for MDA kids, research, and clinic visits at UNC and Duke.
Thank you for reading a personal story about my buddy. Cameron, we miss you already. Thank you for the love, laughs, and kindness you graced upon all that knew you. We will keep cheering…Let’s Go Canes!