Just over one year ago, life changed for 17-year-old Kayla Young.
“I was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia, which is a type of blood cancer. I asked, am I going to live? Am I going to die? I was 16 years old when I was diagnosed, and I didn’t know what my future was. I thought I had it all planned out, and all of a sudden, it’s like a rollercoaster.”
The Grade 11 student at Kelly Road Secondary School is no stranger to tough battles. She played both football and rugby for the Runners, and says her resilience developed on the field has helped her in the toughest fight of her life.
“Those sports have taught me to be very stubborn and very bull-headed. That’s how I jumped into my treatment. I have to be stubborn. I have to say no, I am not going to lose this battle. I am going to work hard and beat it, like how I would beat everyone on the field.”
“Quite a few times, my rugby team came down to visit me at the hospital. They surprised me, and I thought it was really awesome to know I have this big support team.”
The Timberwolves Student Athlete Society heard of Kayla’s fight and selected her as the MVP of the Month. TSAS President Emily Holmes and all the TWolves hope to raise as much money as possible for a fellow athlete.
“We are doing three events this year. We are doing a snowboard raffle next week, we are doing a GoFundMe page, and we are doing or 3rd Annual Fill the Bus Bottle Drive. She has a lot of spirit, and she is excited for us to help her, just as much as we are. It is going to be a series of great events to help someone who is in need, but so full of life.”
Kayla will even be in attendance at the Fill the Bus Bottle Drive on March 30th.
“When I was in school, I heard a lot about the Timberwolves, and how they were this elite group of athletes. Hearing how they’re trying to do good in the community, and help those who can’t help themselves. Those who are in a predicament and their lives have changed; it’s really heartwarming and amazing to know there are people thinking of you.”
The Timberwolves Student Athlete Society hopes the City of Prince George will come out and help raise fund for Kayla and her family. And as for her battle with cancer? That is a fight this tough, smiley teenager is winning as well.
“At the moment, I am in remission, which is amazing. I still have treatment for the next year-and-a-half. Once a month I go for chemotherapy, so it is always going to be in the back of my mind. But, soon, the battle will be over.”