An angel to light up the night

Stephen Brun
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Lights for Life raises $200,000 for PCH Foundation

SUMMERSIDE - Krista and Wade Silliker and their daughter Alicia know they have an angel watching over them.

Over the holiday season, the Margate family will have a visual reminder of that fact, thanks to the Prince County Hospital Foundation's Lights for Life campaign.

The Sillikers' daughter, and Alicia's twin sister Brianna, passed away after a car accident in November last year.

To honour the memory of the 16-year-old, the family and the hospital's Youth Who Care board made a special donation to PCH's annual Christmas light display - an illuminated angel that represents Brianna.

"Brianna worked on the Youth Who Care board, and they decided they wanted to honour her memory, so they had an angel made by Malpeque Fine Iron products, who are also our cousins," Krista explained.

"A lot of the kids that are on the (youth) board were friends with Brianna, so it's personal for them, too."

The 17th annual Lights for Life campaign raised $203,437 in donations so far this year. Throughout November, gifts are made to the hospital foundation in memory of loved ones. The event is a major fundraiser for proceeds that purchase life-saving equipment for the hospital.

Wednesday night, a crowd of more than 1,000 gathered at PCH to watch the official lighting of the display, which is choreographed to music.

The Silliker family appreciates the need for donations as much as anyone. Krista works in the nursing department at PCH, Wade is an employee of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, and Alicia volunteered on the Youth Who Care board along with her sister.

Although Alicia is attending St. Thomas University and wasn't able to attend the ceremony last night, she will be home next week to see the display honouring many loved ones in the community, including her sister.  

The angel, which is lit with Brianna's favourite colours, will be a permanent part of the Lights for Life display this year.

"It's nice to drive into town every night and see that angel there and think of her," said Krista. "It means an awful lot to us when people make donations in her memory."

Priority items for the campaign this year include over $240,000 in dialysis equipment, $151,000 for high definition colonoscopies and gastroscopes, and over $17,000 in dental instruments.   

Gifts to Lights for Life will still be accepted until the end of the year, and can be made at www.pchcare.com, or by calling 432-2547.

 

sbrun@journalpioneer.com

Organizations: Care board, PCH Foundation, Prince County Hospital Foundation Malpeque Fine Iron Queen Elizabeth Hospital St. Thomas University Lights for Life

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  • Remembering
    December 08, 2011 - 13:10

    This was and still is the most horrible situation that a family could ever go through. I hope there is understanding that the other horrible half of this equation is the driver of the truck who also has to live with this for the rest of his life. We seem to forget him and his family who also suffers. Someone should light a candle to help ease his pain.