Coach Dad: Father’s Day Surprise

With profound sadness we share that after a valiant battle Darian Hunt passed away on Saturday, May 4, 2019. The entire WestJet family extends our most heartfelt and deepest sympathy and condolences to Troy, Neda, Kaiya, the extended Hunt family and the Clarenville community. Darian’s strength and courage, along with the Hunt family’s love and devotion to each other will continue to inspire us.

Anyone who has been away from their family and friends for three to four days, let alone for a prolonged length of time, knows how good it feels to reconnect with them. Imagine being separated from your 10-year-old daughter and your extended hockey family for more than two months while you devote yourself to caring for your 13-year-old son as he undergoes treatment for leukemia. This is Troy Hunt’s reality.

Inspired by Troy and his son Darian’s story, we recently teamed up with our WestJet Cares for Kids partner Ronald McDonald House Charities Canada to give Coach Dad Troy from Clarenville, Newfoundland an early Father’s Day surprise – actually a couple of surprises.

While the planning, scheming, and preparation took weeks, the surprises happened rather quickly starting in the Clarenville Caribous pee wee hockey team dressing room.

Darian's friends planning the surprise in their hockey dressing room

Followed by a knock on the Hunt family’s door at the Ronald McDonald House Toronto.

WestJetter knocking on a door

Culminating with a game of shinny hockey with some teammates from back home.

Darian playing hockey

The end result? Bona fide evidence that being surrounded by family and those you love truly is healing.

Watch for yourself and you’ll see what I mean:

Powerful stuff, eh?

The Hunt family is one of the more than 30,000 families that call Canada’s 15 Ronald McDonald Houses and 16 Ronald McDonald House Family Rooms home each year. Please consider joining us in supporting RMHC so more families with sick children who must travel to access healthcare can be kept together during a time of healing and hope.

Happy Father’s Day to all Coach Dads out there and to all those who lift us up and heal us with their presence, love and support.