Canstar Community News - ONLINE EDITION

Community rallies to help Colby and family

  • Print

The Caligiuri family is off to Calgary seeking treatment for six-year-old Colby, who has Stage III kidney cancer.


But Tony and Darla Caligiuri won’t have to worry about paying for hotel, meal and transportation costs — thanks to the generosity of many of their neighbours in La Salle.


A La Salle Cares for Colby fundraiser was held on Feb. 18, with hundreds of people braving blizzard-like conditions to reach the La Salle Community Centre and support the Caligiuri family.


"I thought it was a fabulous turnout," Darla Caligiuri said.


Christie Houston-Klatt, one of the event organizers, echoed Darla’s assessment, saying "everyone stepped up."


This fundraiser isn’t the first time that local residents have offered Darla, Tony, Colby and older brother Caden, eight, a helping hand.


Over 50 families have taken turns preparing meals for the Caligiuris over the past three months. This support has helped the family cope while faced with 34 weeks of chemotherapy and radiation treatments for Colby combined with Tony’s work as a City of Winnipeg paramedic, and day-to-day family activities.


Colby’s medical condition was first identified after an accident while the family was vacationing on a B.C. island last spring. Darla, who is also trained as a paramedic, said the youngster was imitating his brother and tried to ride a BMX bike down a hill. He crashed the bike and his parents, knowing he was injured, took the next ferry off the island. They ended up at a Vancouver hospital where it was determined that Colby had internal bleeding. Then a CT scan showed a mass surrounding his kidneys.


Darla said the diagnosis of cancer was a total surprise, as Colby hadn’t shown any symptoms.
The bike accident caused the tumour to rupture, so chemotherapy was needed to prevent migrating cancer cells from taking hold in other parts of Colby’s body.


The weeks of treatment have helped.


"I’ve somewhat gotten my little boy back," Darla said.


The family made the decision to take Colby to a nephrology clinic in Calgary because the staff there specializes in helping children with kidney disease.


However, until the doctors can assess Colby’s condition, they don’t know if or when he’ll be a suitable candidate for a kidney transplant.


"They can’t predict anything," she said.


She expects that more trips to the clinic will be required as she and Tony seek out the best possible medical care for their son.


"You have to be your child’s own advocate," Darla said


For those so inclined, donations can be made to the Colby Caligiuri Fund through PayPal at calwood96@yahoo.com in partnership with the Variety Club of Manitoba.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

Readers' Choice Awards

Best Of Winnipeg Readers Survey

See the results of the 2014 Canstar Community News Best of Winnipeg Readers' Survey.

View Results

This Just In Twitter bird

Poll

How many Fringe shows have you attended or plan to attend this year?

View Results