WATCH ABOVE: Fans gather outside hospital in flash mob for Gino Odjick
VANCOUVER – Hundreds of fans showed up at Vancouver General Hospital this afternoon to offer cheers of support for former Vancouver Canucks player Gino Odjick, who is fighting a rare terminal heart disease.
The 43-year-old former Canuck was wheeled outside to greet the crowd as they chanted “GINO, GINO, GINO!”
On Thursday night the Vancouver Canucks posted a letter from Gino to his fans saying he is in the biggest fight of his life.
Just two months ago, he was diagnosed with AL amyloidosis, a condition that causes abnormal protein to be produced and deposited on the heart. It is hardening his heart and doctors have told him he may only have months or even weeks to live.
“In my heart, I will always be a Canuck and I have always had a special relationship here with the fans. Your “Gino, Gino” cheers were my favourite. I wish I could hear them again. You have been amazing,” wrote Gino in the letter.
Now fans have decided he will hear those cheers again while he is battling the disease from his hospital bed.
WATCH: Close to 300 people turn up to VGH to offer support.
Another event has also been planned for Sunday, July 13, at 11 a.m. also at Vancouver General Hospital.
“I am inviting all Canucks fans to join me in a rally outside Vancouver General Hospital where Gino is being treated right now for a “Gino!” chant,” wrote the organizer.
WATCH: Odjick fondly remembered in Vancouver
Thoughts and prayers have been pouring in on social media for the fan favourite.
Thoughts and prayers to Gino Odjick and his family as he deals with this recent health challenge #GINOGINOGINO
— FIN (@CanucksFIN) June 27, 2014
— Tampa Bay Lightning (@TBLightning) June 27, 2014
— NYIslanders (@NYIslanders) June 27, 2014
The Vancouver Canucks have also released a tribute video to Gino:
There are three ways that you can help and send your support to Gino as well.
- Send your Wishes to Gino on a special website set up for him.
- Donate to support the “Gino Strong Fund” which supports travel costs for Gino’s kids and members of the Odjick family to travel to Vancouver to be with Gino
- Donations to support aboriginal youth education and wellness initiatives can also be made through the Canucks for Kids Fund
Do you know of any other events going on for Gino? Let us know in the comments.
© Shaw Media, 2014