Jet drag­ster part of com­mu­nity fundraiser

The Expositor (Brantford) - - NEWS - MONTE SONNENBERG MSon­nen­berg@post­media.com

A com­mu­nity fundraiser this week­end in Scot­land will fea­ture an ap­pear­ance by one of the fastest land-based ve­hi­cles in On­tario.

The North­ern War­rior jet drag­ster is the brain­child of Neale Arm­strong, the long­time man­ager of Drag­way Park, near Cayuga. Arm­strong com­pleted the drag­ster in 2015 and has since ramped it up to 300-plus m.p.h. in the quar­ter mile.

Satur­day’s fundraiser will be held at Mod­ern Auto Parts at 78 Townsend Con­ces­sion Rd. 2, just east of High­way 24.

The event will be held on be­half of Vic­to­ria Em­mer­son, 5, of LaSalette, and her fam­ily. The young­ster has been di­ag­nosed with leukemia and is un­der­go­ing an in­ten­sive pro­gram of chemo­ther­apy.

“Teeter­ville fire­fight­ers are go­ing to put on a safety show for the kids,” says Mod­ern co-owner Todd Hope. “I un­der­stand they’re go­ing to put on a demon­stra­tion with the jaws of life.”

Em­mer­son has be­come a fa­mil­iar face at McMaster Chil­dren’s Hos­pi­tal in Hamil­ton since re­ceiv­ing her di­ag­no­sis in April.

There have been biop­sies, spinal taps and the in­fu­sion of chem­i­cal cock­tails de­signed to re­verse her can­cer. The treat­ment on­col­o­gists have mapped out for Vic­to­ria will take nearly three years to com­plete.

The di­ag­no­sis has placed a fi­nan­cial strain on Vic­to­ria’s par­ents, Becky and Jared. A Go­FundMe cam­paign has been mounted on their be­half with a goal of $10,000. Nearly $3,600 has been raised so far, with Satur­day’s event ex­pected to add to the to­tal.

“We’re go­ing to have a prac­tice ses­sion with the Jaws of Life,” said Gary Tay­lor, a cap­tain at Nor­folk Fire and Res­cue Sta­tion 4 in Teeter­ville. “We’ll tape off an area where peo­ple will be safe and we’ll tear a few cars apart.”

Grand­fa­ther Dana Thorne, of Brant­ford, re­ports that Vic­to­ria’s sum­mer has been filled with love, fun and ad­ven­ture.

“She had a good July,” he said in an in­ter­view. “There wasn’t too much hos­pi­tal. We tried to give her as much child­hood as we could be­cause she was feel­ing pretty good. We’re try­ing to fit in as much as we can while we can.”

The fam­ily is brac­ing for four months of chemo­ther­apy be­gin­ning this fall.

A bonus mus­cle car will ap­pear at Mod­ern Auto Parts, along with the North­ern War­rior.

Satur­day’s event be­gins at noon and winds up at 3 p.m. Ham­burg­ers and hot dogs will be bar­be­cued on site.

Ad­mis­sion is free but do­na­tions will be ac­cepted.

DAVE ERAUW PHOTO

A fundraiser for a LaSalette girl who is bat­tling leukemia will be held Satur­day at Mod­ern Auto Parts, near Scot­land. The event will fea­ture an ap­pear­ance by the North­ern War­rior, a jet drag­ster ca­pa­ble of speeds in ex­cess of 300 m.p.h.

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