Community helps realize Vancouver mom's dying wish for her 11-year-old son
VANCOUVER -- It was a Vancouver mom’s dying wish.
She wanted her young son to be able to continue to pursue his figure skating dreams after she was gone.
Now, the community is coming together to help make that happen.
Elesine Dantienn and her 11-year-old son Erighan have been described by friends as “a team.”
“Elesine was a really dedicated mom to her boy. She was a single mom. They had each other,” said Matt Kerr, who got to know Elesine through a business network.
Erighan may be young, but he has long been passionate about figure skating.
“It’s his sport. It’s his thing he’s poured himself into,” Kerr said.
But figure skating is expensive. So when Elesine was diagnosed with cancer, Kerr and others stepped in to try to help.
Kerr knew first-hand just how crucial that financial assistance could be.
“A couple years ago, I lost a nephew and we raised some money for him,” Kerr said.
He helped start a GoFundMe page to ensure money wouldn’t stop Erighan from chasing his dreams on the ice.
“Erighan has one thing that’s normal. One thing that he knows. One thing that he loves,” Kerr said.
The community, friends and strangers alike have responded to the call for help in a big way. So far, they have raised more than $77,000 of their $100,000 goal.
“(Elesine) was just absolutely overwhelmed with gratitude; (it) brought her to tears,” Kerr said.
On Wednesday, Elesine lost her battle with cancer.
“She passed at 3 a.m. with her friends around her and her boy right beside her. Cuddling her,” said an emotional Kerr.
“She went in a very nice way … she went in the kind of way you’d want to go,.”
He believes that Elesine’s spirit will always be with her son, both on the ice and in his heart.
Elesine Dantienn was 46.