Ontario police collecting birthday cards for 11-year-old battling cancer for fifth time
LONDON, ONT. -- Eleven-year-old Sarah Hamby was diagnosed with leukemia when she was three years old. She has spent most of her life in and out of hospital because of the cancer relapsing.
Now, Sarah, who is from Beeton, Ont., is back at SickKids hospital in Toronto battling cancer for the fifth time, and all she wants are birthday cards.
“It’s really hard sitting here and watching your friends trying to navigate hell, now five times over,” says close family friend Leila Paugh.
With Sarah’s birthday coming up on Dec. 5, Paugh found out that all Sarah wants are birthday cards, so she made it her mission to rally people to do just that.
“I want to bring them a little cheer and bring them a little hope, so I’m just going to do my funny thing and get everyone cranked up and happy.”
Paugh made some posts asking people to send Sarah birthday wishes on social media. Norfolk OPP Const. Ed Sanchuk saw the posts and wanted to do something for Sarah.
“I just thought what a great idea and just to help to bring some smiles to this 11-year-old's little face,” says Sanchuk. “I can’t even imagine as a father and a police officer, I can’t imagine what this family is going through and definitely what this little girl is going through, she’s definitely a fighter.”
Sanchuk put the call out for cards on the OPP West Region Twitter page, and it’s really taken off.
“For everyone who’s contacting me, I can’t thank you enough. Her birthday is just right around the corner and this is something to give her that extra will and extra strength, and to bring a smile to her face,” says Sanchuk who’s encouraging people to mail cards to the Norfolk OPP detachment.
He then plans to drive all the cards to the family before Sarah’s birthday.
Paugh says she’s amazed by how many people are coming together to support Sarah and her family. Another family friend also started a GoFundMe page for the family to lend that little extra support.
“I hope she feels encouraged and supported and to know she’s not alone,” says Paugh. “My ultimate hope is that obviously Sarah will battle through this one too and that it’s successful.”
Card can be mailed to: Norfolk OPP at 548 Queensway West, Simcoe, ON, N3Y4T2.