The Saskatchewan Champion Child for Jim Pattison Children's Hospital and Estevan's own Payton Sernick received a boost of support from a five-time Olympic gold medalist over the weekend.
Payton suffered an unfortunate relapse this past fall that required her to have major surgery to remove multiple tumors from her abdomen last week. As Payton continues to battle cancer and recover from the successful surgery, fellow Saskatchewan celebrity Hayley Wickenheiser of Shaunavon sent the 9-year-old a video message from PyeongChang, South Korea.
(Video Credit: Jim Pattison Children's Hospital Foundation)
"I hope you're doing ok, I hear you're back in the hospital so I wanted to send you some healing vibes from one of the most energetic places in the world: the Winter Games," expressed Wickenheiser, who has won four gold medals and one silver medal playing in the Women's Ice Hockey event.
"I would love to see you 'back out on the ice' someday very soon. So hang in there kid, I'm pulling for you. Stay strong."
Payton and her family, mom Andrea, dad Cheyenne, and little brother Beckham, have made Edmonton their new temporary home while Payton battles and recovers from surgery. The plan is to make their way to Calgary in the next six months as a bone marrow transplant patient.
The most recent procedure that removed cancerous tumors from Payton's abdomen took approximately three hours and was the largest surgery the youngster has been through to date.
"Payton's entire care team has been back in-and-out of her room to manage her pain and her incision," explained Payton's mom Andrea in a video diary posted to the Jim Pattison Children's Hospital Foundation. "She's on the road to recovery, so I'm very happy to say that the surgery went very well. And I am so thankful for that."