CHARLOTTE, NC (July 13, 2012) — The Charlotte Hounds of Major League Lacrosse are proud to announce a partnership with Michigan-based Rainbow Connection, a non-profit organization that helps to grant wishes to area children with life-threatening or terminal illnesses. Drew Pointe, a 17-year-old suffering with Leukemia, wished to attend the July 14 Charlotte Hounds-Denver Outlaws game and meet Hounds goaltender Adam Ghitelman and former Outlaws defenseman Ken Clausen.
“Of all the things a young man could wish for, it’s humbling to know there’s a young man out there who wants to spend time with the Hounds and meet Adam,” team COO Wade Leaphart said. “We want to make this experience an enjoyable and memorable one for Drew and his family during their battle.”
Drew was diagnosed with Burkitts Lymphoma – a rare form of cancer that affects blood cells, lymph nodes and bone marrow – in October 2011. He recently completed “active” chemotherapy and has entered the “maintenance phase” of treatment, which can last up to two years. Prior to diagnosis, Drew had been an avid high school athlete. Lacrosse is his first love, although he also plays football. Drew has not been able to participate in either sport since starting treatment, but is excited to get back to both teams.
Rainbow Connection Wish Coordinator Nancy Schick said that this week is a “window of opportunity” for Drew, as he is feeling well enough to travel and enjoy his wish. Drew said that the Hounds are his favorite team, but he requested the Outlaws game because Clausen had previously reached out to him through Michigan-based Warrior Sports to provide correspondence and equipment during his illness.
“I could not be more honored to be a part of Drew’s wish with the Rainbow Connection,” Ghitelman said. “To be a part of such a strong-willed person’s life is something I will never forget. Drew is an inspiration to us all, and I hope to one day have the strength and courage that Drew exhibits. I cannot wait to meet Drew, his family, and friends.”
Drew, his mother and two other guests will arrive in Denver Friday evening. Saturday morning they will attend the Hounds shoot-around, where Drew will get to meet Ghitelman, as well as the rest of the Hounds players and staff. The team plans to present Drew with a gift-pack of Hounds merchandise, including an official jersey. After practice, Drew and his guests will get to have a personal lunch with Ghitelman and Clausen, provided by Ellyngton’s at the Brown Palace. Later that afternoon, the Outlaws organization will give Drew and his guests a tour of the Sports Authority Field at Mile High facilities, as well as provide passes that will allow them to watch the 7 p.m. EST game from the sidelines.
The Hounds will do whatever else they can to provide a memorable weekend for Drew and to make him feel as though he is part of the team.