ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Jr. Amerks player Kyle O’Donnell was diagnosed with pediatric cancer earlier this year. With over 170 players in attendance, O’Donnell’s family and the Amerks held ‘Kyle’s Slap Shot Challenge’ Sunday in effort to raise funds for a hospital gym.
While receiving treatment at Golisano Children’s Hospital, Kyle craved the gym work-outs he was so regularly part of. His idea was to create a challenge and raise money to buy exercise equipment.
The solution was named ‘Slap Shot Challenge.’ Kyle’s wish was to bring families and children like himself at the hospital a new activity.
“I would always workout, I got diagnosed and when I was at the hospital there was really nothing for me to do there,” Kyle said. “I thought about it and thought ‘why not?’ you have treadmills and bikes or something to do there for kids.”
Hockey players, families and community members came together to hit slap shots, as they went head-to-head in to bring awareness and help the families and patients at Golisano Children’s Hospital.
Kyle’s mother Jennifer O’Donnel said the concept behind the challenge was brought together by her mother and Kyle himself.
“My mother said maybe you should do something similar to the ice bucket challenge and raise money for what he [Kyle] wants to do at the hospital but the idea for the gym equipment was 100% Kyle’s idea,” Jennifer said.
The tournament-style event helped raise funds for gym equipment set to be added to the Golisano Children’s Hospital. Kyle is a member of the Rochester Jr. Americans. Find more information here.